Kacholam

Scientific Name :
Kaempferia galanga L.
Synonym(s) :
Alpinia sessilis J.Koenig
Local/Common name(s) :
Kacholam
Family :
Zingiberaceae
Habit :
Herb
Flowering/Fruiting Time :
April-September
Habitat :
Cultivated
Endemic :
No
Status (IUCN) :
Distribution :
Paleotropics
Nativity :
Indigenous
Uses :
Medicinal
Description (Morphology) :

Rhizomatous herbs; rhizome crowded, strongly aromatic; roots numerous, often bearing, ovoid to spherical, white tubers. Leafy shoot stemless, almost horizontal, near the ground. Leaves 2 or 3; lamina broadly ovate to orbicular, base rounded to subcordate, tip broadly pointed, margin hyaline, upper surface dark green, glabrous, lower surface pale green, white with violetish tinge towards the tip, densely hairy. Inflorescence sessile, 6-12 or more flowered, enclosed within 1.5-3.5 cm long, imbricating leaf sheaths (one flower opens at a time); bracts bifarious, outer larger, inner smaller, 3-4 x 1 cm, ovate-acuminate, white with light green tip, glabrous; bracteoles split to the base (thus each flower appears to have 2 bracteoles), 3.5 cm long, transparent, membranous, glabrous. Calyx 3 cm long, equal to or shorter than the bracts, glabrous. Corolla tube, 4.5-5 cm long; lobes white, 2.5-3 cm long, linear. Labellum 2.3 x 2.5 cm, slightly broader than long, divided 2/3 to the base, each lobe again splits shortly into two unequal halves, white with violet bands in basal half, glabrous. Lateral staminodes, 2.2 x 1.5 cm, obovate, white, glabrous. Anthers white, sessile, thecae, 3 mm long, parallel; connective prolonged into a crest, crest bilobed, lobes rounded, strongly reflexed, white. Stigma globular with a lateral slit. Epigynous glands two, filiform, erect, embracing the lower part of the style. Ovary tricarpellary, many ovules in axile palcenta.

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