Meizotropis pellita (Prain) Sanjappa, Bull. Bot. Surv. India 29:219. 1989 (“1987”) (Syn: Butea minor auct. non Baker; Butea pellita Prain; (≡) Butea pellita Hook. f. ex Prain (basionym));
A rare and endemic perennial found in Uttarakhand and Nepal;
Meizotopis pellita (Hook.f. ex Prain) Sanjappa [= Butea pellita Hook.f. ex Prain] is a rare and endemic perennial found in Uttarakhand and Nepal. No photographs of this species exist on any web resource.
Few days back (posted on 14.6.13) I was passing through the habitat of this species and found it in flowering.
It occurs gregariously in the area and it appears that few hundred individuals of this species exist in this particular habitat.
Sharing the pics to show this scarcely photographed endemic. Exact locality is intentionally not disclosed here.
Thank you all for liking and appreciating this plant. Endemic plants are the most threatened plants in any area if their habitats are few and smaller as with this plant in India. Now with few seeds trying to germinate and establish it here in Pantnagar.
one more rare plant that I /we would perhaps never get to see otherwise….
Very nice to see a rare plant beautifully photographed. Thank you.
AND TO ALL MEMBERS>>>> PLEASE DO NOT DISCLOSE THE LOCALITY IF YOU KNOW IT.
its good that you know it, and may be you can help local botanists, forest dept etc preserve the population, but please do not write it up here on the internet….
let us respect … ideas and sentiments and the endangered species survival.
if we respect them, then researchers like … will feel bold enough to keep showing us pictures of rare plants, otherwise such sources stop showing good things… that’s my worry.
Few weeks back I managed to collect few seeds of Meizotopis pellita (Hook.f. ex Prain) Sanjappa [= Butea pellita Hook.f. ex Prain] from its type locality where few hundred plants were noticed. From this population only one plant was seen in fruiting indicating less seed setting in this species. Out of these seeds two have germinated at Pantnagar. I hope these will mature, survive and later can be transplanted into a protected environment of botanical garden.
Flora Picture of the year -2013 D S Rawat : Attachments (3). 19 posts by 14 authors.
My flora picture of the year 2013 is:
Meizotropis pellita (Hook.f. ex Prain) Sanjappa Bull. Bot. Surv. India 29: 219 1989.
[=Butea pellita Hook.f. ex Prain, Bull. Misc. Inf. Kew 1908: 385. 1908.]
This genus has only two species (M.buteiformis Voigt being other) in the world, both occurring in Himalayan zone (Uttarakhand to Burma) only.
It is a perennial wild legume species which is rarely known and photographed. I myself heard about this species at the time of my D.Phil. research and wished to see, collect and photograph it. The wish fulfilled, but only after one and a half decade! Despite of the long duration of fifteen years my photographs uploaded on eFI are still seems the first photographs of this species on web.
The rarity of M.pellita can be understood by the fact that it is an endemic of Uttarakhand and Nepal only. In Uttarakhand it has only one population known which hardly has more than few hundred(<1000) individuals. No clear information from Nepal is available. Though not mentioned in Indian Red Data Book or IUCN Redlist it certainly deserves a Critically Endangered category on account of few hundred surviving individuals, small unprotected area of occurrence (less than 5km2), meager seed setting and lopping for various purposes in the area.
A project on micro propagation of this species was sanctioned to a scientist from a nearby institution and a recent paper claims development of micro propagation protocols. I may also boast that I have raised two seedlings of this species at my home (in Pantnagar) to which I will later transfer to some botanic garden.
Not just hoping but trying to save this species!
Very well illustrated upload.
Great effort … on your part to save this Critically Endangered sp. Thanks for sharing this unique find..
Excellent Catch … Efforts by you will definitely help to save this sp
Really unique plant …, this certainly requires conservation efforts, hope you are able to grow the specimens you are having…
… all your high-altitude plant photo collection would pass of as flora pictures of year 2013. Strong zeal of meeting plants in difficult situations is clearly seen in these photographs. Thanks for sharing rare plants.
Thanks, …, for such detailed & illustrative narration. Hope you are successful in your novel intentions.
You have really impressed everybody with such presentations in 2013. Hats off to you.
I have seen this plant on the Entrance of Gori valley from Pithoragarh. When you go forward and the road ends. There are many plants on the slopes. Cute, thanks for sharing beautiful pics.
Yes Osmaston (1927) has mentioned one another population in Kali Kumaon. I have not seen it yet. If you are referring to following your post it is a different species.
In this summer I am hoping to visit the area you mentioned, however.
An thanks for liking it.
Oh yes, I had forgotten. But I do remember seeing your plant at another locality may be in Corbet towards Nainital if possible.
I will check my files.
I have seen three dwarf species of Butea in Himalayas. The one described in this post is M.pellita was originally reported only from Patwadangar in Nainital and the herb is locally called ‘Patwa’ and ‘dangar’ means rock. However, this is also found elsewhere in Kumaon. ‘Kali Kumaon’ refers to the area between Ramganga (Saryu) which borders Pithoragarh and Champawat district and the Lohaghat ridge. This ridge as well as the Ramganga(Saryu) meets Kali at Pancheshwar. I have also seen this species near Banoliya FRH in Nainital Forest Division at 1500m and also at Mad-Manley in Pithoragarh. We have also grown a few successfully at Himalayan Botanic Gardens at Nainital.
The photo is the other post by …, found abundantly in lower reaches (1400-1900m) of Gori, Darma and Byans valleys on the rocky cliffs is Butea minor. It is abundant near Madkot in Gori valley, Garbadhar in Byans valley and Sobala in Darma valley. I am not sure whether it is synonymous with B.buteiformis.
Yet another dwarf Butea is found in the adjoining Kanchanpur and Baitadi district of Mahakali anchal of Far Western Nepal. You can find it while driving from Dhangari to Baitadi on the lower hill slopes. The leaves are very much larger than B.minor and the flowers are white in colour instead of orange-red as in the other two species. However, I only have a photo of the plant in fruits, which I am posting here. May suggest id for this as it is completely different from the other two species posted.
Yes we saw those plants together in Patwadangar, I had forgotten 🙂 Good memories !
Thank you … for additional important information. Meizotropis have only two species in the world M.pellita, the species mentioned here, and M.buteiformis (synonym B.minor) which is found throughout Himalaya from Kumaon to Burma. I have seen it last year (2013) in Kali valley where it is frequent along road from Dharchula to Mungti, growing over rocky slopes. This third one from Nepal seems really interesting. The colour of flower may not be a significant character but with the picture it certainly differ from M.buteiformis and M.pellita. But then it requires plant specimens to determine identity/novelty.
Now it is clear with your information that M.pellita has one or two more populations in Kumaon and some plants are safely growing in Himalayan Botanical Garden Naini Tal. I will be very happy to visit this botanic garden in spring and later also. I know you have made great efforts to cultivate many orchids there in addition to other species.