The Beginning of Something Beautiful

In case you’re wondering about the picture we’re currently using as the signature image across all of our online media, it can be revealed as a budding Frangipani tree, growing in the garden of FAMM HQ.

Frangipani is part of the genus Plumeria and is found in its dozens of species across tropical and sub-tropical Asia, Central America and the Middle East.

Frangipani tree in winter with no leaves or flowers

photo by Sergej Marsnjak (Indonesia)

The stark, stick-like branches alone have a distinctly alien quality and ooze a milky, irritant latex when cut. But they grow glossy, dark green leaves and beautiful, soft-but-robust flowers with a delicate fragrance. 

The flowers are most fragrant at night, in order to lure Sphinx Moths to pollinate them. The flowers, however, yield no nectar, and simply trick the moths into inadvertently pollinating them in their search for nectar.

Frangipani flowers

photo by Bhikku Amitha, via Pixabay

The petals are often made into leis, threaded flower necklaces worn in ceremonial situations in many Pacific island cultures.

Plumerias in all their varieties have carried complex symbolic significance for over two millennia across many cultures, becoming associated with weddings, funerals, love poems and fertility. Reliefs of the trees can be seen carved into ancient stone temple walls.

We’ll post more pictures of our tiny wonder as it matures. In the meantime, we'll finish up with a peek at its smaller sibling, which has taken a very different approach to growing.

Frangipani bud no.2 at FAMM Collective HQ

photo by Gary McFeat, FAMM Collective

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