Lawsonia inermis

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Photographs by: Dr. Maulik Gadani

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  • Botanical Name : Lawsonia inermis L.
  • Synonyms : Lawsonia speciosa L.
  • Common Name : Hennah, Mehndi
  • Plant Family : Lythraceae
  • Plant Form : Shrub
  • Occurrence (Sectors) : 5, 10, 17, 23, 29
  • Occurrence (Special Areas) : Van Chetana Kendra, Basan

About Lawsonia inermis Plant :

  • Habit : A much branched shrub, branches 4-angled, often with a sharp point.
  • Leaves : Opposite, elliptic acute mucronate, entire, base narrow.
  • Flowers :
    • Many, fragrant, white or rose-coloured, in large, terminal panicled cymes.
    • Calyx campanulate, lobes 4, ovate, acute.
    • Petals 4, undulate, episepalous, short-clawed, slightly rounded.
    • Stamens 8, inserted in pairs on the calyx-tube.
    • Ovary globose, 2-4 celled, ovules many on axile placenta, style thick, stigma capitate.
  • Fruit : Capsule globose, supported by calyx-tube and tipped with the style, seeds many, triangular.
  • Flowering and Fruiting Time : April-July
  • Significance :
    • Cultivated as a hedge plant.
    • The plant yields an orange-red dye called Hennah, which is employed by Indian ladies to colour hair, nails, hands and feet and also by hajis for dyeing their beards.