Saturday, June 26, 2010

Some Himalayan Wild Flowers

The Himalayan Berberis, Berberis aristata grows wildly near Dharamsala. It is called 'Daruharidra' in Sanskrit which means 'Tree turmeric'. It has many medicinal uses in the Indian systems of medicine . The flowers are a very attractive yellow, which cover the bush entirely.
The Himalayan Clover, Trifolium pratense is found in the meadows. 'Pratense' in latin means found in the meadow. It is useful for relieving cough, skin problems and symptoms caused by menopause.

The tiny violet flowers of the Himalayan Peristrophe are very pretty. This wild flower is also seen near Dharamshala.

Friday, June 18, 2010


The Rhododendron was first discovered by the English plant hunters in 1799 in the Himalayas. Later, in 1850, an expedition to Sikkim, in the Himalayas, found more than 50 species of the flowering plant. Indiscriminate collection by the plant hunters in the last century has brought many species of this beautiful flowering plant to the brink of extinction. Trekkers and mountaineers in the Himalayas use the wood of this tree for fire, as it burns even when wet.
Rhododendron is called Guras in the local language. The flowers of the red rhododendron are used to make jam . Rhododendron flowers are also used in local cooking.
The plant is very popular among gardeners in the west, where many hibrids are available.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Football Lily

The African Football Lily, or Blood Lily Scadoxus multiflorus probably knows about the World Cup. It is blooming everywhere in my garden.
The flower is also known as the Monsoon Lily and the Fireball in India. It has another botanical name, haemanthus multiflorus. The inflorescence is big and spherica, resembling the football.The plant has bulbs which multiply each year. This lily is a native of Namibia in Africa. The leaves are bright green and attractive. The plant flowers during the Monsoons.
All parts of this plant are poisonous.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Himalayan Wild Rose

The white Himalayan Wild Rose is a common wild flower in altitudes of 4000 feet. They compete with the Rhododendron is showing off their spectacular blooms.
The cream coloured flowers attract bees and butterflies, and perfume the surroundings.

I don't know if they are the natives or a spillover from the roses planted by the British in the last century. Whatever it is, the Himalayan Wild Rose is beautiful.