Field of Science

Friday Fabulous Flower - Frangipani

To get a fabulous flower this week of illness and snow required a trip to our teaching greenhouse to see what was enjoying the heat, humidity, and short days. Here's a great component of UTF, ubiquitous tropical flora, that was mentioned in passing the other day. The common name is frangipani (Plumeria rubra), a member of the dogbane-milkweed lineage. Dogbanes quite commonly have their corolla lobes arranged like a pin-wheel. The numerous varieties of this ornamental shrub range in flower color from deep rose to white, but the rich golden yellow with white is a favorite, and is sometimes called Mexican frangipani, which is where it is native. Now if you carefully scratch the flower's image, and smell, well, you won't get anything, but the rich perfumy fragrance is one of frangipani's best qualities, and why it is named after a famous Italian almond scented cream pastry.

1 comment:

Arati said...

interesting trivia about the name. lovely picture!