Jasminum sambac (Mogra)

Summer= Alphonso mangoes and

Summer = Mogra

Going by the botanical name of Jasminum sambac, these flowers bloom in the evenings and last for a day.

They have a heady fragrance and are strung into ‘gajras’ or garlands. Besides use as religious offering, ladies adorn their hair with ‘gajras’. The flowers can be simply threaded with a needle and thread or elaborately knotted together. Stop at any signal and one is veritably assaulted by young boys selling these.

In South India, the gajra is interspersed with green Tulasi leaves and orange Aboli flowers. That combination has a grace of its own but is not freely available in Pune.

The plant grows as a bush and flowers mainly in the summer. It loves sunshine and make sure to fertilise with ‘K’ (Potassium) rich fertilisers for abundant flowering. It can be easily propogated with cuttings during the monsoon.

I have read that Jasminum sambac is the national flower of Philippines.

Plant a tree in your home and liven up your summer. It grows well in pots too, just make sure it gets some sunlight daily.

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