Tuesday, 13 August 2013

A balcony with a view...


The tree on the right with the long trunk is the Papaya tree (papaw or pawpaw). The one on the left is the Ashoka tree which is steeped in Indian culture and history. Ashoka means “without sorrow” in Sanskrit. The large tree behind the Papaya and Ashoka trees is the Jackfruit tree and eating its abundant fruit are the inmates of the Home for the Aged, which holds an annual charity sale of books and other items. I live on this side of the wall. Jackfruits are heavy. In the olden days men aspiring to build their bodies lifted jackfruits and grinding stones to develop their biceps. This was before gyms and weights became affordable.  

...and a blanket of greenery


The thick foliage you see in this picture is actually trees growing in the sprawling courtyards of two convent schools opposite my house. They have been there long before I moved into the area.

The annual rains bring these trees alive, even in the urban jungle called Mumbai.


Photos: © Prashant C. Trikannad

13 comments:

  1. I only could not place the ashoka tree. I thought it was what I call a Na tree. Do the leaves turn red? and does it have very fragrant white flowers.
    Jak of course is very popular in Sri Lanka as a vegetable. In the northern part of Sri Lanka it is only eaten as a sweet when it ripens.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mystica, I have read that the leaves of Ashoka trees turn red but the ones in my backyard and elsewhere in the city don't. In fact, these trees are popular in Mumbai and other urban centres. They grow really tall, almost as high as four storeys. Everyone calls them Ashoka trees; perhaps, they're of a different kind. Jackfruits seem to be popular in Asian countries, perhaps the tropical climate suits their growth. I think it is the only fruit one can eat all the way through right down to the core and seeds, which can be cooked or dried and roasted.

      Delete
  2. Beautiful pictures, and I loved the stories behind these trees. Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Fleur. The place I live in is one of the few green areas left in Mumbai, thanks to catholic missions and charitable trusts which own much of the land. Everywhere else there is only concrete.

      Delete
  3. I love trees. What a lovely setting to live in.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tracy, the setting is lovely early in the morning or very late in the evening. The rest of the day there is heavy traffic on the road that you see on the right in the first picture, which was taken on a Sunday.

      Delete
  4. Prashant: As I write this comment I am sitting on the deck in our backyard beneath a huge elm tree and other greenery across the alley and around me. I feel fortunate to live in a small community where there are lots of trees. It made me sad that Mumbai is essentially a concrete city.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bill, that must be both lovely and peaceful. We have pockets of greenery in Mumbai and a few green zones in the distant suburbs where one can soak in nature without human and vehicle encroachments, though getting to these places is another thing altogether.

      Delete
  5. Are your trees there native? Here in Southern California, most trees have originated somewhere else, including almost all of the palms. The indigenous trees seem to me the most beautiful: live oak and palo verde.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ron, the Ashoka tree is said to be native to India while the jackfruit and papaya trees are found in different parts of the world. We also have a lot of palm trees in and around the city, mostly along the coastline. I wish I knew specific names of some of the trees that grow where I live.

      Delete
  6. Replies
    1. Sarah, thank you. I clicked them on my Samsung Galaxy Tab2.

      Delete
  7. This post is really informative to all kind of people. I am very happy to see the post. I will request you to give more information about this. I have gotten many knowledgably speech form here. I have also website where you can get some knowledge which may be for your welfare. Visit here…..
    home cinema

    ReplyDelete