THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A team of researchers from Jawaharlal Nehru Tropical Botanic Garden and Research Institute (JNTBRI) and the University of Kerala has discovered a new plant subspecies from the Western Ghats.Named Rungia longifolia subsp. keralensis, the plant subspecies was discovered by a team comprising S Santhosh Kumar and Sam P Mathew of the JNTBRI, R Jagadeesan of the Department of Botany at Kerala University and A Gangaprasad, Director of the department’s Centre for Biodiversity Conservation.
Named after Kerala, as it was discovered in the state, the sub-species belongs to Rungia longifolia herb species, endemic to Sri Lanka. It is classified under the Acanthaceae plant family.
The discovery has found mention in the latest edition of ‘Abrahamia’, an international journal of plant sciences, published by Department of Botany, Kerala University. It was initially found in the Shendurney Wildlife Sanctuary in Kollam district in February 2016.