27 May 2023

Treat (ThursdayTreeLove)

 "One of the secrets of a happy life is continuous small treats." —Iris Murdoch

Regular morning walkers need no additional motivation despite peak summer here in Pune. Especially walkers on the Tekdi (small hills within the city). Different trees bloom in different months which make the walks all the more interesting whatever the season. 

Here is a glorious Gulmohor that grows precariously on the edge of a quarry which is a favourite spot of all tekdi walkers. 

I have featured it before on this blog but then the month is incomplete if Mayflower is not posted here!!
These photos are from last week. 

Hope you enjoy this floral treat as much as we do.

I am joining Parul in her ThursdayTreeLove bloghop. Do head over to see fantastic trees from around the world. Better still, join in. 

28 April 2023

Beautiful Cousins ( ThursdayTreeLove)

We all have met the glorious Tabebuias in all their pink glory. The towering Tabebuia rosea demand and rightfully get attention due to them. Here is one such from Pune at the end of it floral splendour. 

And today, i want to introduce you to it's cousin..the Tabebuia pallida. According to 'Trees of Pune' (our most popular and authentic field guide for Pune trees), this species is evergreen and the leaf has 3 leaflets (T rosea being deciduous drops it's leaves and the bare tree bursts into flowers before new leaves emerge). 

Shiny green leaves with 3 leaflets

Tabebuias belong to the Bignoniaceae family ...a quick identification give away are it's didynamous stamens. Which means of the 4, 2 are taller and 2 are shorter. 

Didynamous stamens

We were lucky to see its first blooms and here they are. Pretty aren't they?

29 March 2023

Why so? (ThursdayTreeLove)

 Yet another TTL post thats not on a Thursday..  


I seem to be making a habit of it!

Without further ado, let me go to this tree that immediately made me ask. "Why so?"

At first glance, I am sure all of you will notice that the there's profuse flowering on the right tree and nothing on the left.  

On going closer, i could see that the 2 'halves' were of the same type. Maybe it is a twin trunk whose base has been covered with mud and grass as part of landscaping. Or they are 2 trees growing side by side . Either way, their location suggests they get the same sunlight (abundantly), water and other factors like soil, nourishment etc.

Yet only one half had these wonderful blossoms. 

10 March 2023

Learning From Trees (ThursdayTreeLove)

 My TTL post is not on a Thursday but I decided to go ahead anyway. Any day is a good day to enjoy trees!

Todays trees are from the campus of a educational institute in Hinjewadi, Pune. Even though work kept me busy, I made time to meet plants growing there. This campus is home to the top management institutes in the country and student managers undergo a high pressure, hectic and demanding course. I am sure they must find these green nooks a calming spot to relax, study or discuss.  

Here are some images..

An interesting rose plantation at the entrance

Looking down to a soothing green canopy

This must surely be a wonderful space to reflect especially when the Parijat and Plumeria bloom. There's also a RaatRani which is not in the image.

The lovely Ixora add a touch of colour

The stately Bottle Palms always impressive! 

A poster on the Elevator door. This seems to be a college club.. Obviously students get hands-on experience with planting and nurturing trees

23 February 2023

Twisty (ThursdayTreeLove)

 Pune has many Eucalyptus trees - in parks, on roadsides and so on. Its not a native species but is very commonly planted here. Its easily identified by the almost white flaky bark on the trunk. The fragrant leaves immediately reveal the identity! 

So it was a huge surprise to see this particular tree with a blackened (possibly by fire?) trunk and twisting bark and tell-all leaves lying at its base. It grew straight up and broke out into multiple branches which looked exactly as a Eucalyptus does. The tree was very tall but the fallen leaves left no doubt. 

Here is this Twisty tree... It reminded me of a Shari that is sometimes seen on Bonsai. 

Twists on the trunk are eye catching.

26 January 2023

Tree With Story

Ever so often, on ThursdayTreeLove, we hear the words, if only this tree could tell its story... Especially when its an old stalwart holding its own. 

Today is 26th January, celebrated in India as the Republic Day. An important landmark in my country's freedom.

It seems a good day to write about this particular Peepal tree or Ficus religiosa of the Moraceae family. 

Since our bloghop is about trees, I will very briefly touch upon the history (not doing it the justice it deserves) and the story the tree has to tell. I have added some links for anyone interested to read more. Google will also help!! 

I saw this massive old Peepal at the Mamledar Kacheri in Pune which is a government office related to land records. Everyone coming there keen on finishing their work and rushing off, possibly only looking at this tree as a spot to shelter from the Sun. 

Umaji Naik was a revolutionary who fought against rule of the British from around 1826-1832 inflicting great damage . To cut a long story very short, the British captured him and he was imprisoned, tried. On 3 Feb 1832, Umaji Naik was hanged at the above mentioned premises from the Peepal tree. Thereafter, he was left there for three days in order  to deter people from more revolts. 

This tree is indeed a witness and participant in our freedom struggle. It stands to remind us of how our fore fathers fought so that we are free and independent today.

You can read more about Umaji Naik in this Wikipedia article and about his life here

The Peepal grows in one corner of the premises. Offering cooling shade to visitors

People end up sitting under the tree little realising its part in our freedom struggle.

There is a small sign post on the tree which states that Umaji Naik was hung from this tree

14 January 2023

Unsual (ThursdayTreeLove)

Again a ThursdayTreeLove post thats not on a Thursday! I am sure dear TTL readers will not mind! 

My tree today is quite common and most of you from India will know  and recognise it. It is the Ber or Zizyphus of the Rhamnaceae family. I have not identified the tree to the specific epithet so I will stick to just Zizyphus. 

The reason I am sharing it is because it was an unusually huge tree. Pune has many many Ber. In home gardens, public gardens, on the hills and even on the highways that lead out of the city. But they are usually up to one storey tall. 

 Those of who have read my earlier posts, know I was on a cycling tour in Assam. After finishing our ride for the day we enjoyed  a lovely and unique Bodo lunch at a small island resort near the Chandubi Lake. I noticed this large tree due to the benches that were lined up in its cool shade. They invited us to lie down a bit and rest and look up at the beautiful sky. 

That's when I realised it was a Ber. It was about two storeys tall and its branches were groaning with fruit. The three veined leaves with a shiny underside easily gave away the identity. 

Looking up..

Is this a triple trunk tree or 3 separate ones? 

The benches are seen.. inviting cyclists to rest

Fruit and leaf 

We have often taken refuge from the Sun or rain under the Mango, Ficus or Tamarind trees, It was my first instance of napping under a grand Ber tree. Unusual and Restful!

I am joining Parul in her ThursdayTreeLove bloghop. Do head over to see trees from around the world. Better still, join in.