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BEAUTIFUL FLOWERS - That can be seen in Chiang Mai

BEAUTIFUL FLOWERS

Thai Lotus

Perhaps one of the most popular flowers in Thailand, since, in Buddhism, this plant is a symbol of purity and innocence and can be found in all the shrines and temples. Originating sometimes in dirty and muddy water, the lotus is considered a pure and untainted flower. It is a symbol often portrayed in the applied arts of Thailand.

Apart from its flowers which are used as offerings, the lotus plant is useful in several other ways - the petals, stamens and roots of certain varieties have medicinal values. They are the major ingredients of various recipes prescribed by traditional herbalists. Almost every part of the lotus is edible: dried seeds boiled in syrup, sometimes with crushed ice, is a popular dessert; its root, cut into thin slices and boiled with pork ribs, is a delicious soup; the crisp young leaf and the long fleshy stem of the bua sai are also made into different tasty dishes; even the large leaf, which is too tough to eat, is sometimes used to wrap rice which, when steamed, absorbs the subtle aroma of the leaf.


Frangipani

Nothing evokes that tropical feeling quite like the frangipani. Their sweet scent and sheer beauty make them universally loved and the blooms look sensational on the tree and as a cut flower. Pick up some freshly fallen blooms and float them in a bath or bowl of water and it is easy to feel that you are relaxing in a fabulous tropical spa!

Best known for their white and yellow flowers, they also come in an array of tropical and sunset colours, becoming more colourful the closer to the equator they grow. Frangipanis are also tough plants that can survive neglect, heat and drought and still fill the garden with a wonderful perfume.


Zingiber Spectabilis

Zingiber Spectabile, commonly known as Beehive Ginger, is a clumping herbaceous plant native to Peninsular Thailand and Malaysia. The scientific name of the species, zingiber spectabile, comes from two words: "Zingiber" is a Sanskrit word meaning "shaped like a horn; and "spectabile" is derived from the latin spectabilis, meaning "spectacular". Other names for Beehive Ginger include: Black Gingerwort, Champagne Beehive, Malaysian Ginger and Ginger Wort. In South-East Asia, the plant is used as a medicinal herb.


Ratchaphruek

The ratchaphruek flower (Cassia Fistula Linn) is not only a Thai native flower but is also the national flower of the country. The yellow flower clusters grow on the Ratchaphruek tree and the yellow color is symbolic of Buddhism and glory. The tree blooms between February and May and flowers are reflective of the harmony and unity of Thai people. The tree defoliates while the flowers are still blooming, hence leaving only the flowers on the branches. The flower is common throughout the country and is frequently seen growing along roadsides.


Orchids

There's more to the orchid than meets the eye. With a delicate sculptural beauty and historical rarity, these exotic blooms carry an unrivaled symbol of refinement, luxury and mystery.

With more than 25,000 different types, orchids are the planet's largest group of blooming flowers and Thailand has the largest variety and number of orchids than anywhere else in Asia. Flowering mainly in the winter of Thailand, the best time to witness these exquisite flowers is during January. They can thrive without the need for soil and can live on the side of some of the most arid landscapes in Thailand. In traditional Chinese medicine, the orchid is used to help cure coughs and lung.


Jasmine

Jasmine is a very popular flower all over the world, especially in the tropics, because of its unique fragrance. It is believed to have originated in the Himalayas in Western China and most species are white while a few are yellow. There are at least 200 species of jasmine, several of which are grown in the country. In Thai language, this flower is called Mali.

In Thailand, jasmine was chosen over roses as the symbol of Mother's Day which coincides with the birthday of Her Majesty Queen Sirikit of Thailand, the mother of the nation. It stands for the pure, unconditional love that only a mother can give to her child.


January 2023.

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