Karvi Flower (Strobilanthes callosa) – A rare flower that blooms every eight years
Karvi Flower (Strobilanthes callosa) is a rare shrub found mainly in the low hills of the western ghats all along the west coast of India. In the state of Maharashtra in the Marathi language and other local dialects and in the neighbouring state of Karnataka the shrub is locally known as Karvi. These shrubs show an unusual flowering behaviour and the one found in western ghats of Maharashtra has a blooming cycle of eight years. They are found in Sanjay Gandhi National Park, hills of Mahabaleshwar, & Kaas Plateau. The most interesting aspect of these shrubs are that they come alive green every year during monsoon only and after that only dry stems are left. This process repeats for seven years but in the eight year the plant bursts into mass flowering. At that time the pink and white buds bear bright purple flowers in a mass flowering that covers forest areas with a colourful lavender blush with a tinge of pink with its profusion of violet blooms, after this once in a lifetime mass flowering the bush finally dies out.
The blooming last happened in 2008 and as it happened, we were at the right place at right time to witness this unusual blooming pattern of Karvi. The Kaas was looking different this time and later on we realized that we are witnessing something different. It seemed like an invitation from nature itself where we casually went to enjoy the beauty of Kaas Plateau and nature served a delight to our kitty. We were just a week ahead to witness the full blooming of Karvi Flowers.
Nonetheless, here is the photo journey of what we witnessed in Kaas…