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New Year 1997 Postage Stamps
2 Baht (4 Designs)
Beautiful and Useful Water Plants
For most of the country, Thailand is a great plain scattered with bodies of water here and there. These bodies of water are not only where various aquatic animals live but also where several water plants grow. The water plants play an important part in producing food for the ecology of these bodies of water, and both directly and indirectly provide food and shelter for such living things as fish, crabs, shrim and shellfish. Many kinds of water plants, for example water chestnut, water lily, morning glory and water mimosa, are cooked and eaten. Some are a source of raw materials for industry and some are used as fertilizer. Both floating and sinking plants can absorb minerals in the water and increase the amount of oxygen during photosynthesis. These qualifications are linked to and immensely useful for us as they contributed to the cleanliness and quality of the bodies of water. Nevertheless, if the structure of water is disturbed or changed, the growth rate of water plants might changes so rapidly that our water supply is affected. Some kinds of water plants bear beatiful flowers and are suitable to be grown in ponds as decorations and to enhance the beauty of water gardens.
The Communications Authority of Thailand has created New Year postage stamps featuring various types of water flowers. In 1996, the New Year stamps will feature four types of water flowers as follows:
Crinum thaianum J.Schuize (Design 1)
A water plant growing underwater in clear streams that flow throughout the year. Found in evergreen forests in the South of Thailand, they are rare and nearly extinct due to the changing ecological system. One meter long narrow leaves float in the water.
Limnocharis flava Buch. (Design 2)
A water plant rooted in soil along shores with oval leaves growing clusters and rising above the water and long, large, but soft, leaf stems. Bright yellow, three-petaled flowers bloom in clusters. The long large flower stems raise the flowers as high as the leaves. The small flower clusters are also edible.
Nymphoides indicum Kitze. (Design 3)
A floating plant with leaves like those of the water lily , and with long stolons. Clusters of root and stemless leaves grow from stolon nodes. White, hairy, single, 6-8 petaled flowers in clusters grow from joints and bloom at different times. Long flower stems raise the beautiful flowers above water. They are suitable to be grown in ponds as decorations.
Monochoria hastata Solms. (Design 4)
A water plant growing in shallow water, or areas that hold water, such as marshes, swamps and paddy fields. Rooted in the soil or floating on the surface of the water, with single leaves and long, water-filled leaf stems, they have broad, curved and round leaves like arrow head. Purple edible flowers bloom in bunches. The oval fruits produce tiny seeds.
Quantity of stamps: X,000,000 pieces per design
Sheet Composition: 100 stamps per sheet