Decalepis arayalpathra (J.Joseph & V.Chandras.) Venter, Taxon 46: 712 1997. (Syn: Janakia arayalpathra J. Joseph & Chandras.);
Apocynaceae-1 – efloraofindia | Google Groups : 6 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (3)
Janakia arayalpathra (= Decalepis arayalpathra) of Periplocaceae/Asclepiadaceae, a Red Listed medicinal plant, endemic to southern W.Ghats.
FRLHT has established an in situ conservation center near Tirunelveli, TN for protection of this fast-depleting plant species.
Oh right- a rare medicinal plant, have seen in Vellarada Kurisumala, Trivandrum – a zone with some rare sps of both angiosperms and Ferns – boardering TN at east.
arayalpathra…. sounds as if it points towards stiff leaves….is it true?
Thanks a lot boss, for the id.
Flora Picture of the Year 2012 – Vijayasankar Raman: I wish you all a very happy new year 2013.
Here is my ‘Flora Picture of the Year 2012’.
“the seed is now ready to continue the legacy for generations to come, and thus to protect the species from possible extinction”!
arayalpathra (J.Joseph & V.Chandras.) Venter
Synonym: Janakia arayalpathra J.Joseph & Chandras.
Family: Apocynaceae (previously under Periplocaceae).
Decalepis arayalpathra is a bushy perennial subshrub with milky latex, growing up to 2 m high.
It is endemic to the southern Western Ghats and only has few isolated populations found on high altitude rocky habitats. At FRLHT, we conducted extensive explorations across its distribution range in order to assess the population size and also to find suitable sites for in situ conservation. It has been assessed as ‘Critically Endangered’. It occurs in Tirunelveli and Kanniyakumari districts in Tamil Nadu and in Tiruvananthapuram district in Kerala.
The local Kani tribes use the fleshy aromatic roots as tonic and also to treat various stomach ailments.
The ‘Kani’ tribe calls this plant AMRITHAPALA and use it as effective remedy for peptic ulcer, cancer-like afflictions and as a tonic to regain the lost strength and stamina.
The specific epithet ‘arayalpathra’ denotes the resemblance of leaves to that of Ficus religiosa. ‘Arayal’ is Malayalam name for Peepul tree, and ‘pathra’ means leaf. The original generic name ‘Janakia’ was to commemorate Dr.E.K. Janaki Ammal, a renowned scientist of Botanical Survey of India, for her valuable contributions to the botany of India. She was appointed by Nehru ji the then PM as ‘Special Officer’ to reorganize the BSI to the current structure.
Thank you very much … for showing a symbolic shot. While the status of the plant is critically endangered – the photo depicts the promise of its will to flourish.
Thanks a lot … for the appreciative comments.
Yes …, the seeds have very good germination rates, but the main problem is that the whole plants are uprooted/destroyed for the collection of roots. Also, the habitat of the plants is unique. It is mostly rocky and the plants prefer to grow in the narrow gaps between rocks and in the cracks on the surface of rocks. Once they germinate, they have the vigor to break the rock (like some species of Ficus) and create place for them to grow. But, being on open hill tops, the seeds always face strong wind that determines the destiny of the seed, and its only by chance if they find suitable place to grow.
FRLHT has conducted awareness programs to educate the local public about the status of the species and sustainable methods of collection. Now many of the populations are protected by creating ‘no harvest zones’ with the help of state forest department. There is also a proposal for mass-multiplication and reintroduction of the species in their natural habitats.
My concern is…human should never be the reason for extinction of a species. Let us conserve the plants and the biodiversity….
Excellent example of wind-dispersed seed
Are they not the same tribe who are associated with the famed Arogyapacha?
… yes, the same tribes. They are settled in southern W.Ghats of Kerala and TN. They consider that this plant also possesses similar properties as that of Arogyapacha and hence both the plants share another common name ‘Sanjeevani’.
What a wonderful encapsulation of thoughts on botany, process of life and human responsibilities is conveyed by your picture and the write-up .
The location is also symbolic, on the edge of a valley, or cliff , will the seed find its nurturing spot as it floats out ?
“My concern is…human should never be the reason for extinction of a species. Let us conserve the plants and the biodiversity….“
I truly hope this group can make the difference.
I have added the write-up and the picture to Flora picture 2012.
ANOCT21 Decalepis arayalpathra : 1 post by 1 author. Attachments (4).
Fruits of Decalepis arayalpathra photographed from the same location today
Place: Amruth Herbal Gardens, FRLHT, Bangalore