Neelakurinji blooms in the Nilgiris

Published: Sunday 15 October 2006

-- (Credit: Praveen Shankar`)Mass-flowering of neelakurinji (Strobilanthes kunthiana) is at its climax in the vast tracts of the southern Western Ghats. The little flower with no fragrance blooms once every 12 years. The endangered shrub is found in the shola grasslands, at an altitude of over 1,500 metres. The Nilgiris, the Palani hills and the high ranges around Munnar are noted for this rare variety. The 12-year mass-flowering cycle, which draws botanists and tourists from across the globe, was first recorded in 1838.

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