New plant discovered in Nelliyampathy to be named after Prof Madhav Gadgil
Palakkad: A plant that belong to Rudraksha family found from the Nelliampathy hills will be named after Prof Madhav Gadgil. This was decided as an honour to Prof Gadgil who dedicated his life for conserving Western Ghats. The plant has been given the scientific name Elaeocarpus Gadgili. It was found from near Mambara in Nelliyampathy.
The plant has white fragrant flowers which hangs down from the stem. Elaeocarpus family of plants are spotted in tropical and subtropical regions. Over 480 varieties of plants including Rudraksha and Bhadraksha belongs to this family. Elaeocarpus Gadgili is the 13th of this plant family to be discovered from Western Ghats.
Dr Suresh, assistant professor of Botany at Palakkad Victoria College, headed the research team that discovered the plant. An expedition in Nelliyampathy by research fellow Ottapalam native Maya Ragesh as part of her PhD led to the finding of the plant.
Dr K M Prabhukumar, senior scientist at National Botanical Research Institute in Lucknow; Dr Sujana, senior scientist at Coimbatore Botanical Survey of India; and Dr Sojan Jose, assistant professor of Botany at Chittur Government College also were part of the research. The study has been published in ‘Phytotaxa’, a peer-reviewed, international journal published from New Zealand.