Tree Course (ThursdayTreeLove)

Here is yet another wonderful Tree Course.. oops.. I mean Golf Course .. from Pune.

Enjoying the trees at the course is one of the main reasons for me to accompany my husband for Golf.

You see see more images here.

This row of Ficus is the star attraction IMO. One of them has fallen but continues to flourish.

Please click here to see more images of this Golf Course.

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

Cousins (ThursdayTreeLove)

 I had a different tree in mind for todays post but I just read Parul’s TTL 132 post and decided to share some plants from my home balcony garden. 

To be more specific, three plants that are so called ‘cousins’. 

They belong to the same Genus of Malpighia but the specific epithet is different. Hence they are different species. I am growing them to be Bonsai and they do grow as trees in Nature. 

They all belong to the family Malpighiaceae and you can see the distinct flower similarity. The frilly flowers are very pretty but not fragrant. The three plants I am sharing all have simple opposite leaves. 

Click here to read detailed post.

Barbados Cherry or Malpighia glabra flowers.
Flowers of the Frooti.
Flowers of the Malpighia coccigera or Hawthorn

I am joining Parul in her ThursdayTreeLove blog hop.

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Monsoon Fruit (ThursdayTreeLove)

As the mango season ends, its time for yet another fruit to capture our food senses! The Jamun or Syzygium cumini of the Myrtaceae family is available in plenty in June-July as the Alphonso harvest comes to an end.

The tree has just finished flowering and that is how it finds a place in my TTL post. The unique flowers are hidden among the glossy green leaves.

Jamun fruits are typically sold on hand carts in Pune

The fruit is delicate and crushes easily. Monsoon showers bring down some fruit that then colours it purple. Expert tree climbers are required to pluck the fruit from the trees. The fruit has a sharp taste and stains the mouth when eaten. It will also stain clothes if one is clumsy when eating!

Jamun is not among my favourite fruit but those who do like it are its dedicated fans!

Have you seen the Jamun tree? Do you like Jamuns?

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

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Feast (ThursdayTreeLove)

Thisis a wonderful Ficus growing on my regula walk route. It’s full of fruit and birds are having a feast!

Ficus is a genus of the Moraceae family. Many Ficus varieties grow in Pune and around India. Either as roadside trees or in gardens and in temples.

Have you seen birds feasting on a Ficus? It’s a great place for birders to see different bird varieties.

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I am joining Parul in her ThursdayTreeLove bloghop. Do head over to see fantastic trees from around the world.

A Tree And A Nursery Rhyme ( ThursdayTreeLove)

“Here we go around the Mulberry bush…” is a popular nursery rhyme from my childhood and even now. Contrary to the song, it is not a bush but a small tree. Pune has a few of these trees though it is not native to this region and they do flower and fruit every year. Its botanical name is Morus alba and belongs to the Moraceae family.

I wondered about the origins of the rhyme especially when I saw this fruit laden tree. A Wikipedia article revealed some strange history. One theory suggests that the rhyme began with female prisoners at a prison in England who exercised around a Mulberry tree. Another theory suggests that the rhyme could be a joke on the difficulties faced by the silk industry.

This particular tree was filled with fruit though my photo does not do justice to its abundance. The small oval shaped fruit are sweet sour to taste and best eaten when dark in colour. The fruit is also very delicate and crushes easily when handled. Its flowers are green catkins that hand down from axils.

Heart shaped leaves with toothed margins. Some leaves are lobed.
Tree trunk

While this tree is small, I have seen a huge one at Joshimath in Uttarakhand, which is said to be an over 2000 year old heritage tree. (Sharing this image though I know it is totally unrelated to the nursery rhyme…)

Again, my photo does not show the massive trunk girth. It is a long walk to go around the tree.

Have you seen the Mulberry Tree? Do you remember the nursery rhyme?

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

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Tree Frame (ThursdayTreeLove)

At the end of a two hour long walk the cool shade of this Ficus was most welcoming. As I focused my phone camera towards the hill and temple atop, the tree formed a lovely ‘frame’ to the photo.

The Ficus frames the hill in the background

Most temples have a Ficus growing in their courtyard – usually Ficus religiosa or Ficus benghalensis. This seems to be a Ficus racemosa. All Ficus belong to the Moraceae family and are quite easy to identify.

Ficus racemosa

We hiked in the Bopdev Ghat area of Pune and the place is mostly devoid of trees. There are several hills around and being the monsoon, we could see almost all shades of green. A sight for sore eyes indeed! The few trees that did grow markedly stood out from a distance.


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!

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Cousin (ThursdayTreeLove)

These cute pink ball like flowers can be quite misleading. They look like Touch Me Not flowers but the leaves do not respond to touch. Further, this is a shrubby plant whereas the Touch Me Not is mostly a ground hugging herb.

Hooked prickles visible

With no further suspense, let me share that this plant is Mimosa hamata – a ‘cousin’ of the famous Touch Me Not. Both belong to the Mimosaceae family and to the Mimosa genus. It is common on the hills of Pune and the pretty flowers demand attention from afar. They are not fragrant and the plant has hooked prickles which means one has to be careful when trying to take photographs!

Mimosa hamata is commonly seen on Vetal Tekdi

We meet several such plant cousins. The Jasmines are all ‘related’ if I may say so.. They belong to the same Genus. Which other cousins have you met?


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!

Explore (ThursdayTreeLove)

My city, Pune, is lucky to have many hills (called tekdi in Marathi) within the city limits itself or should I say, the city has grown to engulf the hills and now threatens their very existence. I have many posts about the Vetal Tekdi but today I introduce you to the Dhanori Hills. These hills are in the periphery of Pune and overlook the airport.

Compared to Vetal Tekdi, this area is almost tree- less.. almost because there were just a handful of young trees growing there. You can see what I mean in this image.

This is a Neem tree aka Azadirachta indica of the Meliaceae family. It is a native Indian species that grows in difficult areas. It is an immensely useful tree and is seen in most parts of India.

We had to drive quite a distance to reach this spot and seeing the almost lonely tree, I found this to be a perfect quote.

If you know a lonely tree, go and visit it even it it takes miles to walk there! Because lonely tree is a great monument of strength! — Mehmet Murat ildan

The climb is easy in parts but some parts are really tough on the knees entailing huge step-ups. There is a series of three hillocks with a flat portion after each that leads to the next climb. The fourth hillock has a small temple that is a very calm and serene place.

The twin domes of the Dighi Hills (located at some distance away) can be spotted all through the climb up.

Panoramic view of the city.

Travel opens our minds to many things but I think its also important to explore different parts of the city/town we live in. One never knows what surprises it will throw up!

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