Flowers that bloom in the wild

Riot of colours

A wild flower

Monsoon has been generous and bountiful this year. After a spell of showers, the landscapes have turned lush and green. Numerous shrubs and bushes have sprung to life, with several blooming flowers and fruits. It’s indeed a riot of colours everywhere as wildflowers dot the green landscapes.

Flowering shrubs are spotted almost everywhere, on the sides of the road, on the borders of the fields, on hills and mountains, on patches of land, around mounds and river banks. These wildflowers are a visual treat to the passers-by. The beauty of these flowers lasts as long as they are in full bloom. For they are neither plucked to strung into garlands nor used during auspicious occasions. Neither do they adorn the living rooms nor are they cultivated in the gardens.

In fact, these plants are plucked and disposed of as weeds and unwanted vegetation. Some shrubs have medicinal properties, while some are seasonal. Some plants have flowers blooming throughout the year, while, some have a very short span of life. However, the riot of colours is visible almost immediately after the first few days of monsoon.

These wildflowers are swarmed by bees and butterflies that are aptly captured on shutterbugs. Landscapes with wild and haphazardly grown shrubs often come alive on painters’ canvases. The flowers are a powerhouse of food for the insects and flies, and they are spotted in most places of the southern plain regions of Kolar, Tumakuru and
Chikkaballapur districts.

One might have come across the broad-leaved sorrel flowers with dark pink petals and leaves shaped like an arrow. Though found mainly in the central and southern parts of America, these flowers are seen in India too. In Hindi, these flowers are known as khatti meethi.

The yellow cassia flowers are bright and vibrant and are found on the roadside. In Kannada, the flowers are called sogatha. The leaves of this plant have medicinal properties and are used to cure several diseases. The plant is also used in the preparation of biopesticides. Yellow caterpillars and butterflies are generally attracted towards these flowers.

One cannot miss the touch-me-not plant generally found in hedges and fences. Every curious child is amused by the shy leaves that fold themselves inwards the moment they are touched or shaken. This universal plant sports small pink and purple flowers with hair-like petals and is found in the tropical regions. The roots and leaves of this plant are used in the preparation of several medicines. They are called muttidare muni in Kannada.

As a child, we recollect plucking white and yellow cute flowers that bloom on thin long twigs. The coat button flowers are found in grasslands and meadows. Their origin can be traced to America. Butterflies and bees swarm these flowers. In the rural areas, these flowers are known as adduge.

The lesser glory flowers are also known as bilichida buguri hoovu or cheruthali in Kannada. These flowers are purple from inside and yellow towards the border. The leaves of this plant are heart-shaped.

Common Indian nightshade flowers appear like the mouth of a lion and are thus called simhi hoovu in Kannada. These flowers bloom amid blackthorns and triangular-shaped leaves.

The Jamaican blue spike flowers are popularly known as kariyuttarani in Kannada. These flowers often bloom in bunches and are found in open habitats. Butterflies and bees flock these pretty blue flowers. While most of these flowers are universal, some are region-specific.

(Translated by Jyotsna P Dharwad)

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Flowers that bloom in the wild

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