13 May 2022

Mayflower (ThursdayTreeLove)

 May has been unusually hot this year in Pune with no signs of summer showers. Yet the trees seem to be loving the heat. 

Especially the Delonix regia of the Caesalpiniaceae family. Better known as the Gulmohor or the Mayflower. 

Presently the tree is in an leafless stage and it is fully covered with flowers. The tree blazes red or orange-red and surprisingly this colour is actually soothing even in the brilliant daylight. 

The tree beckons from a distance. The full post is here

02 May 2022

Reflections

Hello everyone! 

My theme for my eighth AtoZ challenge was inspired by an online talk by Daniel L Nikrent of Cornell University, USA held by Maharashtra Vriksha Samvardhini about Parasitic Flowering Plants featured on Stamps

I am not a stamp collector nor a fan of stamps. But I do love plants and feel sad about the 'plant blindness' that is so common. I hoped that my posts will encourage readers to look around them as they move around in their cities. Notice the trees/herbs/climbers their leaves, flowers and how the plants change with seasons. 


In this process, I was introduced to the world of stamps and found it is extremely fascinating. Even though I kept myself restricted to India Post stamps, during my research, I saw many lovely stamps from around the world. I learnt that there are stamps on gold/silver foil, 3D stamps, scented stamps, stamps on wood, fabric... Wow!  

Philately is indeed a wonderful hobby. It can also be a tool to introduce children to various topics. 

Several scholarly articles have been published that use stamps (from all over the world) to study other subjects like Palentology, Fossils and Minerals. I am sure this can be extended to Animals, Architecture, History etc. Just needs some creativity on part of the teachers.

I was a bit apprehensive if my readers would enjoy my posts and I tried to strike a balance between plant and stamp information. Idea was that all visitors would find the post interesting. 

Dear readers, a big Thank You for all your feedback! And encouragement! Most of you (and I) remember having collected stamps at some point as was evident in your shared thoughts. 😌

Some comments really stand out .. In my Q postTimothy S Brannan commented that stamps were 'like tiny history lessons'. So true!! 

Viyoma has creatively used info from my posts which she commented on in my V post. I am so happy she found the post useful. 

Arlee Bird who has been collecting stamps for 60 years had most encouraging comments. In my B post he said, "In my years of stamp collecting I never acquired many stamps from India. This is a beautiful example of stamp art. A nice addition to any collection." 

A big Thank You to Afshan Shaik who has commented on every post!  

There were a couple of queries which I shall try to answer. 

In the T post, Radhika and Pradip Nair had commented about denomination of stamps. I consulted Dr Ajit Vartak - a famous geologist and stamp expert and Secretary of Maharashtra Vruksha Samvardhini in Pune. According to him, the denomination is based on prevalent postage rates. 

Jayashree had asked if Ashwagandha is used in Tea. Yes indeed. Apparently Ashwangandha Tea has huge health benefits but should not be consumed in case of immunocompromised individuals, pregnant women. Here is an article on this topic. 

Some other info about my theme. A general search on the Colnect site showed over 100 stamps by India Posts featuring plants. Of these more than 40 had botanical names on them, 30 had local names of the plants. I found 7 stamps with Roses and 3 with Jasmine. Other stamps had plants or flowers or fruits as part of overall stamp design. 

This is not a complete count.. there will be stamps that I have overlooked. 

There are many stamps that I could not include in my posts. These include many Orchids, Roses and medicinal plants. Stamps featuring trees like Cochlospermum religiosum , Chinar, Parijat, Coconut, Cotton, Coffee, Wild Guava also could not be included. 

Maybe I should showcase them in another post. 

Denominations have varied over the years. In my selection, 25INR was the highest in the Z post. 

Here is a cover that I have and been saving for the last post. It features the 2013-issued Round Leaf Asia Bell flower and is 5INR denomination. Its the only plant stamp that I possess. The plant is a native climber that grows in the Himalayas at 188-3600m elevation.

Codonopsis rotundifolia of the Campanulaceae family

Special Cover ' Mission Devrai' 


So that's curtains on the 2022 April AtoZ. I reconnected with 'old' AtoZ blogger friends and made new ones too! This year saw some awesome blogs. You can catch up on all the 2022 AtoZ bloggers here

Stay Happy folks! Stay Healthy! 

A ready reckoner for my previous AtoZ journeys:

2020 Experiences Of A First Time Grandma

2019 Caring For The Care Giver

2018 Contemporary AtoZ

2016 Herbs

2015 Gardens in Pune

2014 Exercising for Fitness

2013 Mixed Bag

30 April 2022

Zoological Survey of India

   I am participating in the April AtoZ Blogging challenge and my theme is Plants featured on Indian Stamps. This is my eight attempt at the AtoZ and the focus is on plants. 

My theme is inspired by an online talk by Daniel L Nikrent of Cornell University, USA held by Maharashtra Vriksha Samvardhini about Parasitic Flowering Plants featured on Stamps

I am not a stamp collector nor a fan of stamps. Hence almost all my posts are purely based on research on the internet. I have tried to cross check the info before posting here. Please do share correct info and links to the same in case of discrepancy. 

India Post has a very strong network reaching deep deep into the interiors of the country and I depended on it for news from home when we were posted in far away places.  In this age of smartphones, Internet, how many of us really write letters - snail mail as they are now called? Despite this , I find that new stamps are being issued and we have stamps on diverse topics including Armed Forces, Films, Personalities, Wildlife, Handlooms, Handicrafts and so on.. It is amazing!

Today's selection may not strictly match my theme, but then, it is the last post, and Z is a difficult alphabet ... 

I am sure you will love this stamp and enjoy my choice! :-)

The Zoological Survey of India was set up in 1916 and India Post issued a commemorative stamp to celebrate its centenary year. With a denomination of 25 INR, it depicts a dense forest and wildlife therein. 

Post of India, GODL-India <https://data.gov.in/sites/default/files/Gazette_Notification_OGDL.pdf>, via Wikimedia Commons

In the same vein (stamps about Organisations/Institutes), here is a 1990- issued stamp of denomination 2 INR about the Indian Council of Agricultural Research. It shows blades of Wheat. Wheat is an important crop in the country and our diet. Wheat is Triticum aestivum of the Poaceae family.

Post of India, GODL-India <https://data.gov.in/sites/default/files/Gazette_Notification_OGDL.pdf>, via Wikimedia Commons

In 2002, on the occasion of the "8th Session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, New Delhi: Mangroves" four stamps with images of four different Magrove species were issued. 

And I do find a couple of Z there!

;-)

Jokes apart, I thought it is important to include Mangroves considering the threats they currently face. The four species are Brugeria gymnorrhiza, Sonneratia alba, Nypa fruiticans and Rhizophora mucronata.  

The India Postage Stamps website  has a complete catalogue of stamps. Please click the link to see many many wonderful stamps.

Colnect is a comprehensive portal for Stamp collectors. It gives detailed information about every listed stamp.  Click here for detailed info about Stamps - what is a stamp, types, formats, water marks, perforations and much more.  

This is the last post of the 2022 April AtoZ. 
Its been great having you here. 
Thank you one and all for your support and encouragement!

My Reflections post will be up on 2 May 2022. See you there!

Do keep visiting this space. It will be wonderful to hear your thoughts.

Stay Happy! Stay Healthy! 





29 April 2022

Yellow?

   I am participating in the April AtoZ Blogging challenge and my theme is Plants featured on Indian Stamps. This is my eight attempt at the AtoZ and the focus is on plants. 

My theme is inspired by an online talk by Daniel L Nikrent of Cornell University, USA held by Maharashtra Vriksha Samvardhini about Parasitic Flowering Plants featured on Stamps

I am not a stamp collector nor a fan of stamps. Hence almost all my posts are purely based on research on the internet. I have tried to cross check the info before posting here. Please do share correct info and links to the same in case of discrepancy. 

India Post has a very strong network reaching deep deep into the interiors of the country and I depended on it for news from home when we were posted in far away places.  In this age of smartphones, Internet, how many of us really write letters - snail mail as they are now called? Despite this , I find that new stamps are being issued and we have stamps on diverse topics including Armed Forces, Films, Personalities, Wildlife, Handlooms, Handicrafts and so on.. It is amazing!

Y has proved to be the most difficult and I am taking the libertY of diverging awaY from plants with names starting with Y. whY? you maY well ask?

Obvious reason is that I was unable to find a stamp with a Y name plant. 

Another is that, I am using the above to showcase one of 11 commemorative 2017-issued stamps by India Post on RamayanOne of the stamps shows Hanuman talking to Sita under a tree.

According to mythology stories, Sita was kept in a grove of Saraca asoca trees in Ravana's garden. This handsome native evergreen tree has flowers that are Yellow-orange and are extremely beautiful. The dark green leaves contrast beautifully with the blooms. Here is a flower image from mY collection. 

Saraca asoca is seen at many places in Pune, by roadsides and gardens. 


Its cousin Saraca thaipingensis has yellow blossoms. But I have not seen this tree. It is an introduced species in India but I have read that there is one in Bangalore's Lal Baug Botanical garden.

Here is the stamp of denomination 5 INR.

Post of India, GODL-India <https://data.gov.in/sites/default/files/Gazette_Notification_OGDL.pdf>, via Wikimedia Commons

Here is another stamp that shows a beautiful tree on Roadside. It could be a tree with  Yellow flowers or Yellow foliage. The stamp is part of Beautiful India series of denomination 15 INR and issued in 2017. 

https://postagestamps.gov.in/Stampsofyear.aspx?uid=2017

What could this Yellow tree be? The stamp doesn't offer many clues as to the location or season. Or maybe it is the artist's imagination! 

I hope you enjoyed this post as much as I enjoyed researching and writing it!

The India Postage Stamps website  has a complete catalogue of stamps. Please click the link to see many many wonderful stamps.

Colnect is a comprehensive portal for Stamp collectors. It gives detailed information about every listed stamp.  Click here for detailed info about Stamps - what is a stamp, types, formats, water marks, perforations and much more.  

We meet tomorrow for the last Z post of the challenge and some lovely stamps. 
You can catch up with my previous posts here

Till then, Take Care and Stay Happy!  

28 April 2022

X is for Xmas

   I am participating in the April AtoZ Blogging challenge and my theme is Plants featured on Indian Stamps. This is my eight attempt at the AtoZ and the focus is on plants. 

My theme is inspired by an online talk by Daniel L Nikrent of Cornell University, USA held by Maharashtra Vriksha Samvardhini about Parasitic Flowering Plants featured on Stamps

I am not a stamp collector nor a fan of stamps. Hence almost all my posts are purely based on research on the internet. I have tried to cross check the info before posting here. Please do share correct info and links to the same in case of discrepancy. 

India Post has a very strong network reaching deep deep into the interiors of the country and I depended on it for news from home when we were posted in far away places.  In this age of smartphones, Internet, how many of us really write letters - snail mail as they are now called? Despite this , I find that new stamps are being issued and we have stamps on diverse topics including Armed Forces, Films, Personalities, Wildlife, Handlooms, Handicrafts and so on.. It is amazing!

X . This alphabet has again been a bit of a stretch but I am sure you will love this stamp. And the tree! 

:-)

Xmas is a much loved festival all around the world. I love the Xmas trees and in fact we visited the US in winter 2021, just to see the lovely decorations and celebrations. 

Fir (Genus Abies), Spruce (Genus Picea) and Pine (Genus Pinus) are common conifers used as Xmas trees. This article describes some popular species used.

Here are some of the wonderful trees we saw.

At the Myrtle Beach airport

At Washington Dulles Airport

At Home
Here in India as well, Christmas celebrations are seen across the country with special decorations being put up in hotels, restaurants and markets. Special cakes and puddings and cookies are on sale. 

So its but natural to find this beautiful festival represented on our stamp. India Post's Season GreetingsIndia Post's Season Greetings stamp with a decorated Xmas tree was issued in 2016 of denomination 10 INR. 

Post of India, GODL-India <https://data.gov.in/sites/default/files/Gazette_Notification_OGDL.pdf>, via Wikimedia Commons


The India Postage Stamps website  has a complete catalogue of stamps. Please click the link to see many many wonderful stamps.

Colnect is a comprehensive portal for Stamp collectors. It gives detailed information about every listed stamp.  Click here for detailed info about Stamps - what is a stamp, types, formats, water marks, perforations and much more.  

We meet tomorrow for yet another beautiful plant and its stamp!
You can catch up with my previous posts here

Till then, Take Care and Stay Happy!  

27 April 2022

Withania somnifera

I am participating in the April AtoZ Blogging challenge and my theme is Plants featured on Indian Stamps. This is my eight attempt at the AtoZ and the focus is on plants. 

My theme is inspired by an online talk by Daniel L Nikrent of Cornell University, USA held by Maharashtra Vriksha Samvardhini about Parasitic Flowering Plants featured on Stamps

I am not a stamp collector nor a fan of stamps. Hence almost all my posts are purely based on research on the internet. I have tried to cross check the info before posting here. Please do share correct info and links to the same in case of discrepancy. 

India Post has a very strong network reaching deep deep into the interiors of the country and I depended on it for news from home when we were posted in far away places.  In this age of smartphones, Internet, how many of us really write letters - snail mail as they are now called? Despite this , I find that new stamps are being issued and we have stamps on diverse topics including Armed Forces, Films, Personalities, Wildlife, Handlooms, Handicrafts and so on.. It is amazing!

Withania somnifera will be on my blog for the second time.. both as part of the AtoZ! :-) 

And here is its post from 2016.

Withania somnifera or Ashwagandha belongs to the Solanceae family and is of huge medicinal importance. It is a native perennial herb with branches growing radially on the main stem. Its green bell shaped flowers turn into orange fruit covered with a papery sepals. In Pune, I have seen it growing wild by the roadside. 

India Post issued a commemorative stamp in 2003 of denomination 5 INR.

Post of India, GODL-India <https://data.gov.in/sites/default/files/Gazette_Notification_OGDL.pdf>, via Wikimedia Commons

Wheat is an important component of our diet. To commemorate the Wheat Revolution, India Post released a stamp depicting wheat stalks and its increased production graph from 1951-1968. It is of denomination 20nP. 

India Post, Government of India (GODL-India <https://data.gov.in/sites/default/files/Gazette_Notification_OGDL.pdf> or GODL-India <https://data.gov.in/sites/default/files/Gazette_Notification_OGDL.pdf>), via Wikimedia Commons

The India Postage Stamps website  has a complete catalogue of stamps. Please click the link to see many many wonderful stamps.

Colnect is a comprehensive portal for Stamp collectors. It gives detailed information about every listed stamp.  Click here for detailed info about Stamps - what is a stamp, types, formats, water marks, perforations and much more.  

We meet tomorrow for yet another beautiful plant and its stamp!

You can catch up with my previous posts here

Till then, Take Care and Stay Happy!  


26 April 2022

Vanda spathulata

  I am participating in the April AtoZ Blogging challenge and my theme is Plants featured on Indian Stamps. This is my eight attempt at the AtoZ and the focus is on plants. 

My theme is inspired by an online talk by Daniel L Nikrent of Cornell University, USA held by Maharashtra Vriksha Samvardhini about Parasitic Flowering Plants featured on Stamps

I am not a stamp collector nor a fan of stamps. Hence almost all my posts are purely based on research on the internet. I have tried to cross check the info before posting here. Please do share correct info and links to the same in case of discrepancy. 

India Post has a very strong network reaching deep deep into the interiors of the country and I depended on it for news from home when we were posted in far away places.  In this age of smartphones, Internet, how many of us really write letters - snail mail as they are now called? Despite this , I find that new stamps are being issued and we have stamps on diverse topics including Armed Forces, Films, Personalities, Wildlife, Handlooms, Handicrafts and so on.. It is amazing!

Vanda spathulata is a native Orchid belonging to the Orchidaceae family. It is an epiphyte and grows on trees in Southern India. It bears yellow flowers from September to January.

Several years ago, when posted in Assam, I remember seeing trees adorned with a bluish purple orchid and I was told it is called Vanda. Hence seeing this yellow flower was surprising. Some reading showed that the Vanda genus (obviously) has many members and the one I remmber was most probably the Vanda coerulea. I wish I had taken more interest in Botany in those days.. sigh...

Vanda spathulata aka Spoon Leaf Vanda finds a proud place on a India Post stamp issued in 1991 of denomination 5INR.

Post of India, GODL-India <https://data.gov.in/sites/default/files/Gazette_Notification_OGDL.pdf>, via Wikimedia Commons

The India Postage Stamps website  has a complete catalogue of stamps. Please click the link to see many many wonderful stamps.

Colnect is a comprehensive portal for Stamp collectors. It gives detailed information about every listed stamp.  Click here for detailed info about Stamps - what is a stamp, types, formats, water marks, perforations and much more.  

We meet tomorrow for yet another beautiful plant and its stamp!
You can catch up with my previous posts here

Till then, Take Care and Stay Happy!