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  • 24 February, 2023

  • 5 Min Read



Recently, the Botanical Survey of India has published a new report titled 'Rhododendrons of Sikkim and Darjeeling Himalaya- An Illustrated Account', which lists 45 taxa of rhododendrons.

About rhododendrons:

  • An estimated 1,000 species of flowering plants in the genus Rhododendron are native to temperate Asia, North America, and Europe as well as tropical Southeast Asia and northern Australia.
  • Many kinds are well-liked decorative plants in gardens and parks due to their stunning clusters of huge, vibrant blooms.
  • Rhododendrons are woody-stemmed small trees or shrubs that are either evergreen or deciduous and have large, leathery leaves.
  • Pink Rhododendron is the state flower of Himachal Pradesh in India, whereas Rhododendron arboreum is Nagaland's and Uttarakhand's official state tree.

What are the Report's Key Highlights?

  • While making up only 0.3% of India's total geographic area, the Darjeeling and Sikkim Himalayas are home to more than one-third (34%) of the country's rhododendron species.
  • In India, rhododendrons can be found in 132 taxa (80 species, 25 subspecies, and 27 variations).
  • Five of the 45 taxa mentioned in the paper are in serious danger as a result of anthropogenic pressures and climate change.
  • Among the threatened species are Rhododendron edgeworthii, Rhododendron niveum, Rhododendron baileyi, Rhododendron lindleyi, and Rhododendron maddenii.
  • Since certain rhododendron species have been reported to flower as early as January, rhododendrons are regarded as an indicator species for climate change.

Source: The Hindu

  • 14 May, 2020

  • 2 Min Read



Rhododendron is a large genus of flowering plants and is found mainly in Eastern Himalayas, Western Himalayas and Nilgiris. Some plants of Rhododendron are evergreen and some are deciduous in nature.

  • The species is found in varied habitats from subtropical forests to alpine shrubs, rhododendrons range from dwarf shrubs to large trees.
  • The cold, moist slopes and deep valleys of the eastern Himalayas form a conducive habitat for the luxuriant growth of Rhododendron species and rich diversity in the North Eastern States.
  • The species has been designated as the State tree of Uttarakhand and its blooming in the Garhwal Himalayas is celebrated as ‘Phool Sankranti’, a festival of flowers.
  • Studies on the flowering cycle have revealed that they are prominent indicators of climate change.
  • In high-altitude areas of Arunachal Pradesh rhododendrons are routinely cut for firewood by local people, and forest fires in the dry seasons in Manipur and Nagaland were threatening the survival of many species.

Source: Air

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