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Orchids

Shirui Lily:
One of the most beautiful lilies in the entire world is found only in the upper reaches of the Shirui hill ranges in the Ukhrul district of Manipur at elevations of 2000 metres. This shade loving lily has pale bluish pink petals. This is the state flower of Manipur and it is believed that the British attempted to grow it elsewhere apart from the Siroi Hills but failed in doing so- It grows nowhere else and is considered to be the only terrestrial lily. This flower is traditionally called the ‘Kashing Timrawon’ traditionally and is believed to represent kindness, protection, prosperity and a happy life. It has medicinal uses as well, curing stomach ailments etc. It flowers during the months of June to July.

 

Mountain Balsam:
This is a beautiful wildflower that was believed to be native to China, Thailand, and Vietnam until found near a newly discovered waterfall in Leimaraam, Manipur. It is generally found near water bodies, moist places at altitudes of 900-1800 metres. It is generally found to be yellow in color with a crimson tinge in the centre.

 

Luwangba’s white vanda:
This white vanda similar to a blue vanda was discovered by Luwangba Arambam in Manipur, and described the first time only very recently (August 2008). Found first at Longa Koireng in the western periphery of the Imphal valley. Its presence is only known to be in Manipur as of now. White florets attached to a stalk makes it a very pretty flower to discover in Manipur. So get your trekking shoes on!

 

Fragrant Caper Vine:
It is a climbing shrub with its flowers being fragrant and pale yellow in color. Its fruit is eaten in China and North east India. Found everywhere in Manipur, it’s a climber to look out for.

 

Red Vanda:
An endangered species, the Red Vanda is restricted to the State of Manipur some places in North East India. It grows on small shrubs and trees at elevations of 300-500 m flowering during spring. It is one of the loveliest species in India with limited distribution. The multitude of flowers on a single branch are remarkably beautiful. Red Vanda is renowned for its bright crimson flowers with red spots on a pale orange background of its dorsal sepal and petals. It normally flowers during April and May. It is found especially in the Orchid Preservation Centre at Khonghampat in Imphal West district and goes by the name Kwaklei angangba!

 

Blue Vanda:

One of the most popular Asiatic orchids, Vandas are very much demanded owing to its blue/purple, long lived flowers making it one the few flowers having an almost true blue appearance as there are no exactly blue flowers found in the world. This orchid is native to NE India where it grows in elevations ranging from 2500-4000 feet in the Himalayan foothills. In the state of Manipur its altitudinal distribution varies from 50m to 2000m found in the Hembung hill range in the Ukhrul and Senapati districts

 

Khongamelei:
The similar orchids found in Thailand known as the golden shower tree. The long yellow flowers seemingly appear as if golden showers are an existential part of nature hanging through the trees. Commonly known as ‘amaltaas’ throughout India.

 

Noble Dendrobium:
Noble Dendrobium is a beautiful and forever enchanting orchid, originating from the dense forests of Thailand and NE India. They thrive wild clinging to trees around altitude 200-2000 meters above sea level. Noble Dendrobium is the “classic” Indian softcane Dendrobium. It is a cool grower and has large showy flowers that bloom along the canes rather than from the top of the canes on a raceme. Noble Dendrobium hybrids are popular for their showy, brightly colored flowers along the stems. They can be seen near the Ukhrul district of Manipur but are commonly found everywhere.

 

Orange Ginger Lily:
Orange Ginger lily is a plant found in the Himalayas which bears beautiful orange bottle-brush like spikes of orange flowers. Flowers are very showy, bright orange-red, many in a long upright spike up to a foot long, each with a long-projecting stamen. Orange Ginger lily is found growing wild in the Himalayas and in the NE India typically Manipur, at altitudes of 450-2000 m.

 

Cylindricalvanda:
This specie is very variable in form, size and color. But when a bunch of Cylindrical Vanda are in flowering, it is quite spectacular. This is the only specie in the genus that has no constriction in its leaves and is bluntly pointed. Cylindrical Vanda is an epiphyte native to India, Nepal and adjacent areas. In Manipur, it can be found in Imphal-its capital city.

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