If you want a plant with beautiful flowers, unique leaves and strong fragrance, then what can be the best other than Champa Flower.
Champa Flower, also known as Plumeria in English, is a hardy perennial summer plant with beautiful flowers and leaves. It can be grown both indoors and outdoors. You have probably seen it. It is a hardy, easy to grow plant requiring minimum care. So, A busy person can also add this plant to their list.
It is known as Champa in India, Srilanka and Bangladesh. It is also called temple tree, Frangipani plant, lei flower and mainly grown in parks, open grounds and the divider of the roads but nowadays Many gardeners grow it in their home. The plant is native to Central America and Mexico. Now, It is cosmopolitan in distribution. It is the national flower of Laos.
It is a deciduous plant with thin bark. The stem is sausage-like with a grey-green colour. As it is deciduous, The leaves fall and only the stem remains during the winter season. Champa flower symbolises “Psychological Perfection” and its five petals indicate sincerity, faith, devotion, aspiration and surrender.
Types Of Champa/Plumeria
In general, there are 3 types of Champa flower plants. Within these three types, many species are found and they can be further classified according to their flower colour and other characteristics.
Plumeria Rubra is a tall variety of Champa flowers reaching up to 25 ft tall. It has Red, Pink and White flowers which bloom in clusters. The leaves are long and pointed. It is a common and mostly seen variety. If you want to cover a good area outside our home, this variety is best and works as a boundary. It grows fast. It is best suited for the outdoors.
2. Plumeria Pudica (Nag Champa)
Another has unique leaves. It has long leaves. The leaves are large in the middle and thin at the back and front (Pointed) i.e. Spoon like. It is a medium-sized variety. Flowering is less but of a large size and occurs in a bunch. One benefit of this variety, the flowers remain blooming for (8-10) days. The flowers are white with a yellow dot in the centre. The flowers of this variety don’t have much fragrance. So, It is mostly preferred for foliage beauty. Plumeria pudica (Mexican Plumeria). It can be grown indoors. It is called nag Champa because the leaves mimic the head of Naag (Snake). The plant grows up to (6-15) ft tall.
3. Plumeria obtusa
Another is having round shiny green leaves more or less oval. It can be maintained at different heights, small to tall. The growth rate is slow but has a bushy nature (Dense Leaves). The flower of white petals with a yellow dot at the centre is large, fragrant and appears in clusters. For growing on the rooftop, It is preferred.
➡️You can differentiate these three types with the help of their leaf shapes as show below:-
Red, white, maroon, pink, yellow and a combination of colours with a pleasant and strong fragrance. Flowering occurs in the summer season( From March) and keeps producing flowers until Sept-Oct with a gap of around 25 days after the first flowering. When flowering stops, Don’t remove the old flowers with your hand because it can lead to less flowering or even a gap in flowering next season. So, It is better to let it fall on its own(which normally takes about a month). If flowering doesn’t occur, add Potassium, phosphorus and keep the plants in sunlight which will help to commence flowering. As it is a fragrant flower, the petals are used to make oil.
The Champa Flower Oil is 100% pure, natural and has many benefits. The oil is extensively used in aromatherapy because of its romantic and stimulating fragrance that enhances the mind and body. Traditional medicine also mentions the healing property of Champa oil. The flowers are also used in making beautiful garlands.
Though it is a hardy plant, there are some things to know for its care to get optimum results:-
You can grow Champa flowers both outdoors and indoors. It is best to grow it outside the home in the garden as it occupies a pretty decent area. However, It can be grown indoors inside pots and can be kept on the rooftop also.
Coarse soil/Sandy Soil is good for Champa flowers with good drainage. Compact soil should be avoided.
Light is very important for all plants. When it comes to Champa Flower, It becomes critical. If this plant doesn’t get (5-6) hrs of light per day, then flowering doesn’t occur. Place with filtered light is best.
As it is hardy, It can withstand a wide range of temperatures. During peak summer, Place it in semi-shade condition.
The soil should be made moist but not soggy as it has the capacity of storing water. We can use drip irrigation for pouring right amount of water. Watering should be done when the top layer of soil gets dry (Every Alternate Days). Too much watering can lead to fungal attacks and only vegetative growth. When fungi attack the leaves, Brown patches are seen. To cure it, You can use a copper fungicide.
Too much fertilizer should be avoided as it leads to vegetative growth only. Fertilizer should be added during soil mix preparation. For a 12 inches pot, (2-3) palm FYM and (1-1.5) palm bone meal (For Phosphorus) should be added every three months. During the flowering season, Liquid fertilizer can be given as more energy is used during this time. Micronutrient powder can also be added with liquid fertilizer which will help to impart good colours on flowers and leaves. During the winter season, Champa Plant goes dormant, So – No fertilizer is needed. Homemade fertilizers like Banana Peel and Rice Oil Cake can also be used. SSP can also be used as a source of phosphorus.
When we cut this flower, viscous fluid comes out which is poisonous except for the plant. All the plants of the Apocynaceae family.
February or (Sept-Oct) is the best season for the propagation of the Champa Flower. It can be grown from cuttings. The following points should be kept in mind while propagation by cutting:-
✓Cuttings of 1-1.5 ft tall
✓Let the cell sap (Milky Liquid) flow out completely
✓Dip it in antifungal powder (For Fresh Cutting Propagation)
✓Let grow the callus (For Propagation After 3-4 Days)
The step by step guide on propagating Champa Flower by cutting is given below:-
Step 1:- Take cuttings from branches/stems of the plant. The cut should be clean and sharp. Remove most of the leaves leaving only 4 leaves at the top.
Step 2:- These cuttings can immediately be propagated or they can be left to dry for (3-4) days (So that callus get formed and fungi attack doesn’t occur)
Step 3:- For fresh cutting Propagation, Let White sap flow and dry out. After that, Dip the sowing end in contact fungicide(Compulsory For Fresh Cutting Propagation) and rooting hormone (If Available).
Step 4:– For dry cutting Propagation, Let the sap flow out, remove leaves and keep it in shade for (3-4) days. After that time, take the dried cutting which can be propagated without dipping into fungicide and rooting hormone.
Step 5:- Make soil mix as:- 3 Part Garden Soil and One Part Vermicompost and place it in Pot. Sow the cuttings in the soil mix inside the pot and water the soil thoroughly.
Step 6:- Keep cuttings under semi-shade for one month and then you can place them in sunlight.
Step 7:- After about 2.5 months you can transplant these cuttings into large pots (10-12) inches. Transplantation Soil Mix:- 70% Garden Soil, 20%Compost and 10 % Cocopeat.
This way, You can grow a new Champa flower plant.
Pruning is the judicious cutting of unwanted, weak, dead and decayed stems or branches. It is also done to give proper shape to the plant, As Champa Flower grows large, Pruning is necessary. February( Winter Season) is the best month for pruning. Excessive pruning should be avoided as it can cause late flowering. Root pruning can also be done to restrict overgrowth. At the part of the pruning cut, the antifungal paste should be polished as it can get infected.
Champa flower has many stories connected with Spirituality. This flower is specially offered to goddess Laxmi.
Old scriptures have a tale that says whoever worships Lord Shiva with a Champa flower cannot be a true devotee and this is due to a curse from Narad Muni.
The gopis in Vrindavan ask about Krishna (where he has gone) with Champa Flower.
Champa Flower Vastu
According to Vastu Shastra, Some plants are good to keep at home while some plants aren’t. As Champa is a common and beautiful flower and many people want to grow it in their home but are concerned about Vastu.
As Champa Flower oozes milky sap. Vastu shastra says it isn’t good to grow plants at home which oozes milky sap
According to Dr Anand Bardwaj, renowned Vastu Scientist, Don’t plant it inside the home, It is good to grow outside the home in the garden. It has a positive aura for 80-90% of the time. It has a good fragrance and white flowers are offered to the gods which are its positivity.
You can buy the seedlings of Champa flower from nurseries in Rs. (50-150) Indian currency. However, This price point can differ from place to place and the method used to grow the plant whether it is grown from seed or cutting or grafted. Different varieties have different prices.
Diseases and Pests
Champa is a hardy plant that is generally not affected by any pests and diseases. Though, you can occasionally find these pests in your flower plant:-
✓Aphids :- Identified by back spots
✓Mealybug :- They are white and lives in stem
✓Spider Mites :- Nets Are Seen
✓White Flies :- They keep roaming around flowers.
Prevention:- Spray Neem Oil every 20 days. It should be sprayed on both the front and backside of the leaves and stems.
Champa Flower Uses
- Champa flower is used for Avenue Plantation
- It is used to make perfume and oils.
- It is used to make garlands.
- It is used for decoration and aesthetic purposes.
- The flower has medicinal benefits like- Reduce fever, uric acid, rheumatism, cure constipation and Many More.
Champa flowers are elegant and are very easy to grow and care for. Therefore, It should be grown in our garden. It is the best plant with many choices.
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