Summer hues brew a heady rainbow cocktail.
Leading the parade, straddling Spring and Summer, is the Indian Laburnum (Cassia fistula), so perfectly called Golden Showers. Its long drooping strings of cheery, sunshiny blooms on almost foliageless branches transform it into something King Midas must've surely dreamt up.
Yet another yellow, the Copper Pod or Yellow Poinciana (Peltophorum pterocarpum), soon blankets the trees. Lining miles and miles of Mumbai roads, these golden spires draw the eye up, turning it literally into a City of Gold.
The Curry Leaf plant is in bloom now too. White clusters of blooms with their slightly pungent scent have the butterlies flocking to them.
One of the prettiest trees of this season and one of my personal favourites, has to be the Pink Cassia (Cassia Grandis)!
I love those strawberry-icecream pink flowers smothering the bare tree, followed by the tender green leaves shortly after.
Don't the buds look pretty? The downy pink calyx almost pulls my fingers to touch it.
And just because I like it so much, here's one last photo . Dont you just love those varying shades ?
I've always been fascinated by the delicate pink and white flowers that stud the Rain Tree (Samanea saman ) . These powderpuff-like flowers feel so soft against the cheek that it was always a toss-up whether I liked the flowers more or the wide umbrella-like canopy topped with feathery leaves.
This is one of Mumbai's most common avenue trees and many a motorist out on its blistering hot roads in summer has blessed the relief of its cool shade .
Also colouring Mumbai right now is this flameburst which I spotted on an island while on a boat ride. Could it be Flame of the Forest or maybe the Coral Tree? I'm not sure, I was too far away to make out just which tree it is, but doesnt it look spectacular?
See what I mean? It looks almost as if the whole island was on fire!
Meanwhile, painting the roads right now is the latest entrant, and the city is awash with purple!
Pride of India (Lagerstromia speciosa), also called Queen's Flower or Queen's Crepe Myrtle is another of my favourite trees. The blue-green buds are just as pretty but they really come into their own with the crinkly-petalled blooms painting it in such vivid colours.
So, what's next? I'm getting greedy and I just can't wait to feast my eyes on the spectacular Gul Mohur (Delonix regia) which should be bursting on the scene in a couple of weeks.
(The first photo of the Laburnum was sent to me from Maryknoll, but all the others were taken by me in Mumbai )