Home to a wide variety of common and endemic flora, India and its various climates provide an interesting array of flowers. From the Valley of Flowers in Himalaya to the arid deserts of Tirunelveli, India possesses enough color to amaze even the novice flower enthusiast. Flowering plants of India thrive and exist both endemically and all over the world.
Acampe, a species of orchid, is found throughout the tropical parts of India as well as other parts of tropical Asia. Named from the Greek word for "rigid," acampe flowers are inflexible, brittle and slow-growing. The plant produces thick, meaty vines that grow to massive sizes, nearly hiding the small yellow orchid flowers. The flowers release a pleasant fragrance when they bloom. Growing acampe requires well-drained black soil with plenty of kitchen compost to keep the plant nourished. Long, bi-weekly waterings in subtropical or temperate climates can keep the plant thriving through the warmest months.
Known by alternative names like life plant, donkey ears and Mexican love plant, the air plant thrives in India's tropical and subtropical regions as well as throughout the Americas. The shrub grows to be about three feet in height, producing multiple tube-like blossoms. The flowers of the air plant vary in color from deep reddish purple to yellowish orange. Unlike many tropical plants, the air plant also thrives in rocky soil with minimal access to water, making it a wonderful desert landscaping plant. It also makes an excellent houseplant that is tolerant of everyday life, from pet dander and cooking fumes to cigarette smoke.
A lemon-like tree native to the colder, northern parts of India, citron produces a variety of small, fragrant blossoms that range in color from white to purple. The fruits resemble oddly shaped limes, with thick, pitted green skin. An evergreen tree, citron thrives in temperate and colder climates where it can be propagated by either seed or tree cuttings. It prefers well-drained, peat-enriched soil with long drinks of water once a week.
Corn cockles grow wildly throughout the highlands and the wetlands of India and thrive all over the world in shaded cottage gardens. It produces long, twining stems and lavender flowers that have black streaks along each petal. Growing corn cockles isn't a good idea if you have children or curious pets, as the flower is toxic and can poison whoever or whatever ingests it. Grow it along the fences of your garden in well-mulched soil.