Sampaguita, A National Flower of Asia

4375 Peck Court Pomona, United States, (PressExposure) April 07, 2009 -- Ever been in the streets of Metro Manila in the Philippines? If you have, then likely you've encountered children and grown ups selling you garlands of small fragrant white colored Flowers Philippines [] for only PhP3.00 (Philippine Peso). In some parts of the Asia, these petite but aromatic flowers are known as Jasmine. But in the Philippines, these flowers are commonly called as "Sampaguita".

Known by many Filipinos as a street flower, Sampaguita has been in the long history of the Philippines. In fact,Sampaguita is considered as the national flower of the country. But what else do we know about the Sampaguita aside from its apparent fragrance and simplicity?

Filipinos may not know this but sampaguita is a native flower found around southern Asia, in India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Philippines. Common names include Arabian Jasmine, Mogra (Hindi and Marathi), Mallikā (Sanskrit), Kampupot, Melati (Malay and Indonesian Language), Mallepuvvu (Telugu), Mallikaipu (Tamil), Mallige (Kannada) Kaliyan (Urdu), and Sampaguita (Filipino).

Sampaguita is widely grown throughout the tropics as an ornamental plant for its strongly scented flowers. Numerous cultivars have been selected, including some with fully-double flowers such as the cultivar "Grand Duke of Tuscany".

It is the national Flowers Philippines [] , adopted by its government in 1937. In the Philippines, the flowers are gathered and strung into leis, corsages and crowns or its oils distilled and sold in stores, streets, and outside churches. The garlands may be used to welcome guests, or as an offering or adornment in religious altars.

It is also known that this Flowers Philippines [] was once used as a cure for a headache. Besides the Philippines, it is also the national flower of Indonesia, which was adopted by Indonesian government in 1990 along with Moon Orchid (Phalaenopsis amabilis) and Rafflesia arnoldii. In Indonesia, the flower symbolizes purity, eternal love and nobility. It also symbolizes the beauty of a girl. The flower is commonly used in religious or cultural ceremony especially in Java and Bali. It is nicknamed puspa bangsa (nation flower or people flower) by the government.

In Bengali, the flower is known as "beli" and is extremely popular for its sweet fragrance. It is used to make garlands to adorn women's hair. In Hawaii, the flower is known as "pikake", and is used to make fragrant leis. In South India, jasmines are strung into thick strands and worn as a hair adornment. In China, the flower is processed and used as the main ingredient in jasmine tea.

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Press Release Submitted On: April 06, 2009 at 1:52 am
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