What is Abelmoschus Odishae?

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Overview:

A scientist from the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) recently discovered a new plant species of ‘wild okra’ named ‘Abelmoschus Odishae’.

About Abelmoschus Odishae

  • It is a new plant species of ‘wild okra’.
  • It was discovered in a moist deciduous forest in Bansapal block in Keonjhar district, Odisha.
  • It can be used for hybridisation to create a better variety with high disease resistance.
  • It can also play a vital role in widening the genetic base of okra.
  • Features:
    • It is a perennial shrub up to 5 meters high with a densely hispid, prickly stem with retrorse hairs.
    • It has large, deep yellow flowers.
    • It has sub-reniform seeds with short, stout, and non-spiral trichomes.
    • It also has a seed viability of 95 percent.

What is Okra?

  • Okra, also known as gumbo or ladies’ fingers, is a warm-season vegetable. 
  • It is native to the tropics of the Eastern Hemisphere and is widely cultivated or naturalized in the tropics and subtropics of the Western Hemisphere.
  • It comes in green and red varieties.
  • It is part of the mallow family of botanicals, which also includes cocoa and cotton.
  • It is a good source of minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber.
  • Okra has a mild taste and a unique texture, with a peach-like fuzz on the outside. Inside the pod are small, edible seeds.
  • It contains a sticky juice that people use to thicken sauces.

Key Facts about Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR):

  • It is an autonomous organisation under the Department of Agricultural Research and Education (DARE), Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Government of India.
  • Formerly known as the Imperial Council of Agricultural Research, it was established on 16 July, 1929, as a registered society under the Societies Registration Act, 1860.
  • It is responsible for coordinating agricultural education and research in India.
  • With 113 ICAR institutes and 74 agricultural universities spread across the country, this is one of the largest national agricultural systems in the world.
  • Headquarters: New Delhi. 

Q1) What are trichomes?

Trichomes meaning Hair, are fine outgrowths or appendages on plants, algae, lichens, and certain protists. They are of diverse structure function. Examples are hairs, glandular hairs, scales,papillae

Source: Odia scientist discovers disease resistant wild okra