Rare Peculiar Beauty – The Cannonball Tree (Couroupita guianensis). 

 

I had a short trip to Chiang Mai, Thailand last week, and during one of the many temple visits, I came across this rather peculiar tree. The Cannonball tree or it’s scientific name, Couroupita guianensis. A family of the Brazil nut, this plant is native to South America.

 

If so, how did this peculiar plant end up in many SE Asian temples?

Well for one, the flower has a hood which resembles that of Naga (a mythical Hindu/ Buddhist serpent guardian), hence this tree is Sacred amongst Hindus & Buddhists.

 

Also, in 1881, this tree was planted in Sri Lankan temples mistakenly identified as a sal tree, which in Buddhist beliefs, Maya was holding a branch of a blossoming branch of the sal tree while giving birth to Lord Buddha.

 

From then on, this tree is found all over South East Asian temples, for its cultural significance and also it’s beautiful flowers and peculiar giant cannonball fruits.

 

 

Side View: You can see the way the flower curves up. Similar to a hooded Naga

 

800px-2006_0922_wat_phrathat_doi_suthep_buddha_mucalinda

 

 

 

This flower also emits a wonderful scent, no wonder it is buzzing with bees and insects.

 

 

 

Some fruits, large enough to cause a deadly concussion if it should fall on your head.

 

Such a wonderful plant that inspired this post. I hope you like it!! Feel free to share it!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s