Portulaca laljii: New Species of Wild Sun Rose

Recently, researchers have found a new species of wild Sun Rose in the Eastern Ghats in India. The new species was found in Andhra Pradesh’s Prakasam district. The species is named ‘Portulaca laljii’.

Key Points

  • The newly found species of the wild sun rose has unique features like no hair in leaf axils, a tuberous root, prolate-shaped fruits, a reddish-pink flower, and copper brown seeds without lustre.
  • These flowers are very minute and are about 0.5mm in size.
  • These morphological features differentiate this newly found species from the already existing species of genus Portulaca.
  • The researchers undertook botanical explorations in the Prakasam district of the state from April 2018 to February 2020.
  • The first such species was first spotted in April 2018 but the samples were seen during flowering in July-August.
  • The plant was spotted growing in rocky crevices at a height of around 1,800m above mean sea level, at around less than 10 cm.
  • The name ‘Portulaca laljii’ has been given to the species to honor the contribution of eminent botanist of the Botanical Survey of India, Lal Ji Singh.
  • Portulaca laljii has been designated as a ‘Data Deficient’ species on the IUCN List of Threatened Species as very little information is available about the species’ population.

The details of this research were published as an article in the Journal of Asia Pacific Biodiversity.

The plants of the genus Portulaca are categorized as the sun rose as they bloom in bright sunshine.