IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis

New species of sun rose


Context: Botanists have discovered a new species of wild Sun Rose from the Eastern Ghats in India.

  • The new species, named Portulaca laljii , discovered from Prakasam district of Andhra Pradesh
  • It has unique features such as a tuberous root, no hair in its leaf axils, a reddish pink flower, prolate-shaped fruits, and copper brown seeds without lustre.

  • These morphological features distinguish the species from other species of genus Portulaca.
  • The flowers, which are reddish pink in colour, are very minute, at about 0.5mm.
  • The plant was found growing in rocky crevices at an altitude of about 1,800 metres above mean sea level, very close to the ground, at about less than 10 cm.
  • The flowers are very attractive and bloom for months from June to February. The plant can have a rich horticultural value.
  • Because of the succulent nature of tuberous roots that the plant can survive on rocky crevices.
  • The new Portulaca laljii only grows naturally in rocky crevices.
  • Portulaca laljii has been named to honour the contribution of Lal Ji Singh, an eminent botanist of the Botanical Survey of India associated with the Andaman and Nicobar Centre of the Botanical Survey of India.
  • The species has been placed under the ‘Data Deficient’ category of the IUCN List of Threatened Species because very little information is available about the population of the species.