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  Acanthus ilicifolius
  Citation:  Acanthus ilicifolius L., Sp. Pl. 639. 1753; Hook. f., Fl. Brit. India 4: 481. 1884; Gamble, Fl. Pres. Madras 1014(712). 1925; Manilal & Sivar., Fl. Calicut 221, Mohanan, Fl. Quilon Dist. 298. 1984; Ansari, Fl. Kasaragod Div. 274. 1985; Ramach. & V.J. Nair, Fl. Cannanore Dist. 331, Antony, Syst. Stud. Fl. Kottayam Dist. 296. 1989; Babu, Fl. Malappuram Dist. 567, M. Mohanan & Henry, Fl. Thiruvanthapuram 342. 1994; Anupama & Sivad., Rheedea 14: 10. 2004; Sunil & Sivadasan, Fl. Alappuzha Dist. 532. 2009.
  Malayalam Name(s): Chulli, Chullikandal, Chakkaramullu, Chakkaramulli, Mendli, Moranna, Muthalamookku, Payinjachulli
  Tamil name(s):
  English name(s):
  Description: Gregarious undershrubs, up to 2 m tall, usually erect, rarely scandent, branching usually from older parts; nodes with a pair of spines at the base of the petiole; stilt-roots arising from lower portion of stem. Leaves opposite-decussate, simple, 7-15 x 6-9 cm, variously shaped, elliptic, ovate-oblong, or ovate- lanceolate, narrowed at base, spinous at apex, glabrous, coriaceous, sinuately lobed and spinulose along margins, rarely entire; midrib prominent, lateral veins 4-12 pairs, estipulate; petiole usually 0.5-1 cm and rarely up to 2.5 cm long, terete. Flowers in terminal or pseudo-axillary, 8-20 cm long spikes; peduncle terete, glabrous. Flowers sessile, 3.5-x 3.5 cm across; bract 0.6-0.8 x 0.5 cm, ovate, acute, margin ciliate; bracteoles 2, conspicuous, partly covered by the bract, lanceolate, persistent. Calyx green, 4-partite, lobes glabrous, 12-15 x 1 mm, shortly connate in two opposite pairs, the outer pair larger. Corolla bluish-violet, 3 cm long with a short tube closed by basal hairs; upper lip obsolete, lower lip broadly 3-lobed to entire, recurved by the middle portion. Stamens 4, attached to the throat of corolla tube, didynamous; filaments 13-16 mm long, stout, curved, more or less flat; anthers aggregated around the style, c. 1.2 cm long, connectives thickly hairy, medifixed, bilobed, one lobe sterile, dehiscing longitudinally. Ovary 2-loculed; ovules 2 in each locule on axile placenta; style c. 2.7 cm long, slender, terete; stigma bifid. Capsule, ellipsoid or ovoid-oblong, glabrous, 3-3.5 x 1.3-1.6 cm, apiculate; seeds 4, compressed, orbicular, 1.3-1.5 x 1- 1.2 cm, supported on short-hooked retinacula.
  Habit: Shrub
  Flowering & Fruiting: December-July
  District(s): Kottayam, Alappuzha, Kasaragode, Kollam, Kannur, Thiruvananthapuram, Malappuram, Kozhikkode, Ernakulam, Thrissur
  Medicinal: Yes
  Habitat: Mangrove forests and marshy areas along backwaters
  Distribution: Indo-Malesia and Australia
  Aquatic: Yes
  Epiphyte(s): No
  Saprophyte: No
  Stem parasite: No
  Root parasite: No
  Flower colour(s): Blue
  Weed: No
  Monocot/Dicot: Dicotyledonous Plants
  Exotic: No
  Garden: No
  Edible: No
  Vegetable: No
  Endemic to:
  IUCN status:
  Localities: Kumbla, Taliparamba, Nileswar, Tellicherry, Pallithode
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