Surprise ( Wordless Wednesday)

Rains continuing into October is a surprise for us folks in Pune. Of course it means we are spared the October heat.

An added surprise is this unexpected bloom on my Mogra.

It usually flowers from April onwards , and the last blooms are by end of June.

A lively surprise indeed!

I am joining Natasha in her bimonthly Wordless Wednesday Bloghop!

Wall Flowers (Wordless Wednesday)

What do you see when you walk on the road? For me, the no brainer answer is Trees but very often it’s flowers that catch my eye.

Night blooming flowers may fall down and decorate a compound wall. These Wall Flowers make the structure more beautiful!!

I am sure you will agree!!!

These beauties last only till the Sun comes up!
Fragrant !
The lovely Plumeria!
Morning harvest! Flowers and PC Nilima (Hibiscus, and Magnolia champaca)
I am joining Natasha in the Wordless Wednesday Bloghop

Henna (ThursdayTreeLove)

Today I have a Shrub instead of a Tree but I am sure all of you will enjoy this plant!

The title has been the spoiler so no surprises about the identity.

Yes, these delicate flowers are of the Henna or Mehendi plant. Botanically called Lawsonia inermis, it belongs to the Lythraceae family (that is the family of Crape Myrtles). It is a native and evergreen species.

In my childhood days, I remember it was grown as a hedge plant – I was told that the leaves are bitter hence goats, cows stayed away. However neighbourhood girls always managed to pluck the leaves, grind them on stones and apply the paste on our hands. The red colour was sufficient attraction.. the design was simple – a circle in the centre of the palm and capping the ends of the fingers. There was no thought of making designs.

That’s my plant.. still very young..
Fruit of Mehendi

I do remember we used to put a dot on the forehead.. this is one part where Mehendi does not colour the skin.. the story was if the forehead skin took up the colour then that girl would be a Queen!

No… mine never did colour!

Over the years, this way of putting Mehendi has ended.. readymade Mehendi cones have replaced ground leaves and designs are elaborate.

I am not complaining.. I love the colour and the fragrance that Mehendi leaves on our hands!

Besides India, Mehendi is also used as body art is several countries. We also use it as a hair conditioner and to colour hair.

Here are a few images of Mehendi as body art.

On the top left, the artist is at work! The Peacock and Lotus are popular design elements.

I am sure most of you would be familiar with Henna/Mehendi .. Have you seen the shrub?

I am joining Parul in her ThursdayTreeLove blog hop. Do head over to see some fantastic trees from around the world. Better still, join in!

Red and Green (ThursdayTreeLove)

In May 2020
In August 2020
In May 2020
In August 2020

The Gulmohor (Delonix regia) of the Caesalpiniaceae family is a deciduous tree -which means it loses its foliage in the winter. Come summer it bursts into full red glory (sometimes orange).. but once it rains, the tree becomes a glorious green canopy.

Here are the images of the same tree in May and August! Nature has its own way of signalling seasons to the trees. Is it the temperature, position of the Sun, or something else?

Either way, trees dont need a calender .. infact, sometimes they indicate the upcoming season to us!

This is my TTL post from May 2020 – the very same tree in full red glory!

I am joining Parul in her ThursdayTreeLove bloghop. Do head over to see some fantastic trees from around the world. Better still, join in!

Yellow (ThursdayTreeLove)

The almost mandatory photo stop in my daily walk!

What do you first see in this image? I know you will say trees.. we are on ThursdayTreeLove after all!! And you are right!!

Normally I would have admired the clouds or the view but this time the yellow blaze caught my eye. So much so that I walked an extra 500m to reach this tree.

No identification puzzles this time.

There grew a row of Peltophorum pterocarpum and all were in bloom. Their blazing yellow flowers were the head turners that day. This tree belongs to the Caesalpiniaceae family and is known as Copper Pod Tree. It is a common avenue tree in Pune and its dense green foliage is made up of pretty feather like leaves . Its fragrant flowers give way to rusty red pods hence the local name Copper Pod tree. The Peltophorum looks wonderful in bloom as well as when full of these coppery pods.

Flowers and Fruit
Not native to Pune, yet the species is happy in the city with profuse flowering and fruiting every year.

As I said, this is mostly an avenue tree which means one cannot really sit under its dense cool shade or enjoy its fragrance … It is all in a days work for the Peltophorum to lay out a yellow carpet for morning walkers..

A yellow carpet .. image from a few years ago

Have you seen this majestic tree and enjoyed the fragrance of its blooms?

I am joining Parul in her ThursdayTreeLove blog hop. Do head over to see some fantastic trees from around the world. Better still, join in!

Amazing Ochna (Wordless Wednesday)

Its finally rained in Pune and my Ochna is welcoming it whole heartedly!

Here are its blooms .. used my phone-friendly macro lens after a long time!

Early morning!
Half an hour later
Close up
Yesterdays’s flower
That is not a bud! Its a flower from a week ago.. the sepals of the pollinated flower, close and turn red and then bloom again after a few weeks! The yellow flower is now a red ‘flower’!
The red sepals open to reveal the seeds! The seed is green initially and turns black later. The entire flower show lasts for over a month! (This is an earlier photo)

I am sure you loved these flowers as much as I enjoyed sharing with you.

I am joining Natasha in her Wordless Wednesday blog hop.