Know the interesting facts about a rare flower of Meghalaya

You will be surprised to note that these flowers either grow individually or in groups of three to five.
view of sapria himalayana flower
Image source: Wikimedia Commons

Want to know which is the rare flower of Meghalaya that is getting attention only in recent times? Well, keep reading further. In a small forest tract located on Songket Hill near Tangnub village in Meghalaya, 19 Sapria Himalayana flowers were noticed. These flowers are deep red in color and have yellow warts. You will be surprised to note that these flowers either grow individually or in groups of three to five.

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As per the official of the Department of Environmental Studies which is located in the North-Eastern Hill University in Shillong, these flowers were noticed by their team just outside a cave when they were searching for a cave. Interestingly, the three people who made this amazing finding are Pynshailang Syiemiong, Thomas Arbenz, and Tudor Tamas.

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These special flowers called Sapria himalayana were first discovered by the British botanist William Griffith in 1844 in Arunachal Pradesh. Being a rare species of flowers, they were also reported from Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Thailand, and Vietnam among others. The officials have listed this type of flower as a rare and endangered species in the nation and all over the world.

You will be astonished to know that the environment from where the Sapria Himalayana flower is growing has been well-surrounded and protected by ferns, trees, bamboo, and banana trees. However, the flower doesn't grow where locals practice cultivation, and do forest clearing, cattle grazing, and other activities. Thus, the exact location doesn't get disclosed in order to protect the rare flowers from human disturbance.

As per the view of the scientists, awareness programs should be held for the public to make them understand the importance of biodiversity protection and how the threatened species can be protected. Also, the habitat of the S. Himalayana flower should be kept in its natural condition as the cultivation of the flowering plant requires some challenging tasks.

It is also noticed that tourists who consider themselves nature lovers when they get to know the habitat and exact location of the flowering plant of the rare S. Himalayana shall come to see it and disturb the place leading to less growth.

As per the officials, in the last two decades, there has been no mention of a study on Sapria flowers in Meghalaya as the studies usually focused on the populations of Arunachal Pradesh where the flowers are well-recorded.

For the unaware, Sapria Himalayana is also regarded as Hermit's spittoon. It is an occasional flowering planet that is holoparasitic and is related to Rafflesia discovered in the Eastern Himalayas. Sapria Himalayana flowers are about 20 cm across, dioecious, and unisexual. These unique and different-looking flowers are in dangerous conditions and are likely to get extinct soon.

Sapria Himalayana are the largest flowers in the world and they usually appear above the ground. These flowers are fleshy and have three types such as ram, poilanei, and Griffith. The last mention of these flowers in Meghalaya was made in 2020 when they were seen in West Garo Hills District in Meghalaya.