Feb 4, 2009

Desert Island Plant Challenge

Hello, everyone! Past weeks has been too busy for me to check others posts or even update my garden’s growth. In fact, I’ve been ignoring my garden a lot lately, thanks to my mom who’s been maintaining it well. I wanted to join you all at the Desert Island and finally got time to sit down and choose my plants.

First thing that came to my mind when thinking of which plant to choose was that I need one flower that’d give the hot desert a cool atmosphere and also serve another purpose apart from cooling our eyes. The first plant that came to me is the generously flowering Plumbago, whose parts are used for treating warts, broken bones, and wounds. It is also believed to ward off bad dreams! So here’s my first choice –

Plumbago - Plumbago auriculata - Nîlacitraka

Secondly, I can’t live without worshipping everyday and I’d need a flower fit for the purpose and since I’m stuck to just three, I should choose a plant that can flower abundantly everyday. I thought of Rose, but that doesn’t give flowers every other day… Hmmm… Hibiscus? Ermmm… Yea may be, but again it doesn’t give blooms in plenty though it does so daily… Four O’ Clock! DUH! That’d flower only in the evening… What’d I do in the morning? Hmmm… Aha! I just know which one to choose – Butterfly Pea! That’d please the gods and attracts bees and butterflies!

Butterfly Pea - Clitoria ternatea - Aparâjita

What next…. What next… ? Since we’re in desert and my other two plants would need water in abundance – at least the Butterfly Pea does, I don’t want to waste too much of it and I thought of saving the resource for my other blogger friends’ delicate plants. So what would be the perfect choice? There’s no thinking! It’s the perfect Oleander that demands very less water and attention!

Oleander - Nerium oleander - Karavîra

Phew! That was difficult! I wish I could’ve brought all my other plants – “O’ sweeties, I’ll miss you all for some time, but’ll be back soon. Wish my happy journey. B-bye!”


HelenJ said...

Lovely flowers and excellent choices =)
Have a nice day. /Helen

Sunita said...

Great choices, Chandramouli. The Butterfly Pea should climb all over your desert shelter and give you shade as well :)

Chandramouli S said...

Thank you so much Helen. :) Welcome to Plantville.

Sunita: Oh, that'd be so great Sunita! It'd look like hordes of blue butterflies perched on the shade!

Jamie and Randy said...

I didn't know Plumbago warded off bad dreams! I could have used some last night. I'll plant some under my bedroom windows!

tina said...

Wonderful choices! I especially liked your reasoning with it all and the thinking outloud.

MarionL said...

They're all so beautiful this morning! I'll be sure to check out the Plumbago. I have the pink Oleander, too.
"A morning-glory at my window satisfies me more than the metaphysics of books." ~Walt Whitman

walk2write said...

I am so interested in the medicinal uses for plants. Did you find your information online or in a book? I'm even more glad now that I have Plumbago in my garden! I love the oleander, but I decided to get rid of the one I have since we have a toddler grandson now. I'm become so conscious of the possibly poisonous plants since he loves to touch everything and might pick a leaf or flower.

Chandramouli S said...

Hey Randy! I wasn't aware of it too, but I found it in a book of Medicinal Plants and also in a website online and both told the same so I think it's true! You should definitely plant it as it rewards you with a bunch and doesn't grow like a monster, so a perfect choice for window-planter.

Thank you, Tina :) Glad you okayed my thoughts.

Pink Oleander! Isn't it sooo rewarding, Marion! Even if you forget to water it, it'll continue to flower profusely! Isn't that great? BTW, thanks for sharing that quote. It's so beautiful!

walk2write: I am interested in it too! I recently checked the book of Medicinal Plants in a bookstore here and it has 7 volumes! Planning to buy 'em all eventually. Oh yes! Oleander is a no-no if you have kids picking around your garden. But since it's a must in almost every Indian garden (since it's blooms throughout the year and is used in worship), kids are taught not to touch them here.

walk2write said...

Chandramouli, I want to keep adding to my library of ethnobotanical books. So far, the books I have concentrate on the essential oil aspects of plants. Sometimes I feel like that robot in the movie Short Circuit: "Need more input!" Is the book of seven volumes written in English, and if so, what is the title, please? It's difficult to encourage kids to love plants and insects while keeping them safe from harm at the same time. They're fascinated by "input" too!

gardenerprogress/Catherine said...

All great choices! Love the plumbago!

Anonymous said...

Lovely choices you made Chandramouli! The blue of that Plumbago is very pretty. :)

Jan (Thanks For 2 Day) said...

Great plant choices Chandramouli! They are all lovely & colorful and I like your reasoning behind them & why you would bring them! Welcome to the island...we've been here for a week or 2, grab a lawn chair and a cold drink and sit under my willow tree:)

Anonymous said...

I just love seeing your beautiful, exotic flowers. I've never heard of butterfly pea, it's lovely!

Petra said...

Nice choice of flowers!
I liked the plumbago best.
Have a great time.

Chandramouli S said...

Said true! It IS difficult initially, but I'm sure it's easy for you after sometime as they start helping you around and know which plant is a no-no and which isn't. I remember going around the garden (which WAS big) in my childhood and I knew which is edible and which wasn't! I'll let you know of the book's title once I get back to the store to buy the first volume. Sure.

Thank you, Catherine. I love Plumbago too! (I guess I'm saying that for almost all of my plants. LOL!)

Bluuuueeee! Yes, Racquel - I love blue and am partial towards it - like Morning Glory, Butterfly Pea...

Thank you, Jan. Ahhh! Thank yu so much for the Willow's shade. It's shade is sooo welcome here. Could you scoot a bit to right? ... Yea, thank you :) Thank you for the Lemonade, btw. I love it with extra sugar, just in case you didn't know. Yes, that was a kind way of saying I need more :P

Glad you liked them, Robin. Oh, butterfly pea is so famous here and is used in everyday worship.

Linda Lunda said...

Absoultly WONDERFUL plants to bring with you!

Chandramouli S said...

Thank you so much, Linda :)

Kerri said...

I like your choices, Chandramouli, and especially love blue flowers. The plumbago is gorgeous.
A beautiful island is the place I'd like to be this morning as I sit here rugged up against the chill. We woke up to -5º (-20.5C)!

Rose said...

Hi, Chandramouli! You've made some excellent choices, and I'm glad you made it to the island. The northern part of the US is still cold and snow-covered, so I don't plan to leave this island for awhile:)

I love the blue of that plumbago. I'm going to have to check that one out to see if it might grow here--such a pretty blue is difficult to find in the garden. The sweet pea would smell heavenly (oops, no pun intended), and the oleander would be perfect for the desert climate.

Gisele Schoene said...

This is a hard challenge! I like all the plants you chose, but my favorite is the Plumbago. I didn't know of all its medicinal properties. Thanks for sharing.

Chandramouli S said...

I'm partial to blue, so to say :). Thank you. 20.5 degs. Hmmmm.... Ermmm... We get to that low temperature too but it isn't too cold. In fact, even now it must be somewhere around 25 deg. C but Sun is out and almost scorching! Strange how even temperatures are different in tropical and temperate regions. Stay warm - u need some blankets. :)

Hi Rose! I'm glad I did too! How could I miss your coneflowers, Gail's Susans, and other friends' (sorry the list is too long, guys) exotic plants! Ahhh! You definitely need a break from that black and white coldness!

I'm sure it grows there too, but just that it wouldn't flower during rains (it didn't here :(). LOL! Thank you.

Tell me about it, Gisesle. I felt so guilty for not choosing others! It really was difficult. In fact, the cousin of this Blue Plumbago has more medicinal uses - Plumbago zeylanica - it is more whitish and has been used by people for years. Its root stimulates appetite - this isn't the case for the blue one though.

Antigonum Cajan said...

My Passiflora was a seed
gift. It is already
six inches, and will
provide fruits, besides
the unique flowers..

Nice blog..

Chandramouli S said...

Welcome to Plantville, Antigonum Cajan! :)
Oh wow! Nice to hear yours started blooming! Cool! Thank you for dropping by.

Antigonum Cajan said...


Forgot to mention Turnera ulmiforme/
diffusa. These are small bushes flowering daily. With yellow flowers attractive to bees and resistant to our heat/sun/drought/salt breeze. A real plus in any garden.

In my top five list for thirty years.

A pleasure to visit.

Sue said...

I think I like that last one the best. Great pics!

Wayne Stratz said...

great idea about needing something cool for the eyes.

Chandramouli S said...

Antigonum Cajan: Oh I see! Never heard of 'em. Will check 'em out.

Sue: Thank you, Sue :)

Hi Wayne, Thank you on that again :D Plumbago always has that effect on me.

Tyra in Vaxholm said...

Great choices Chandramouli but be aware of the Nerium Oleander it is very poisonous.

xoxo Tyra

Chandramouli S said...

Thank you, Tyra. Yes, Oleander IS poisonous, but beautiful! It's used in worship in India so almost every home has it! And people ARE aware of its toxicity and keep it away from their mouths ;)

Antigonum Cajan said...

Oleander, besides the flowering beauty,
has a somewhat sweet scent of vanilla not
of my liking; same as Ilan-Ilan it is too intense for yours truly, but very popular in many circles.

However on top of my list are:
Mirabilis siciliana

Chandramouli S said...

Antigonum Cajan: I must admit though that I love that strange smell of Oleander - I wouldn't say it's vanilla here though, but something I can't quite identify with.
Aha! I love Frangipani! The flowers with the most lovely fragrance!