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Collected in Nepal by Tony Schilling, the leaves on B. ciliata are huge round paddles that, for the most part, lie almost flat on the ground. It sends up white flowers in early summer on stout red stalks. In our travels to the foothills of the Garhwal Himalayas in northern India, we saw this growing at around 7,000 feet and again at around 11,000 feet. There it grows absolutely flat to mossy and fern-clad cliff walls, and often on the north or northwest sides. It's pervasive companion, an in extreme contrast, was Adiantum venustum, the Himalayan maidenhair fern, also a low grower. As it was fall, the leaves had become beautifully reddened and a light snow was falling on them. Massive exfoliating birches (Betula utilis) and rhododendrons surrounded their colony.
Minimum temperature: -20° F