Gulmohar is a very popular roadside tree of my city beautiful – Chandigarh with its graceful foliage and beautiful flowers. Delonix regia belongs to Caesalpinioideae of family Fabaceae. It is also called flame tree because of its clusters of flame-red flowers found in typical racemes. The tree is medicinally important and also an inspiration to poets. It bears compound leaves.The flowers of Gulmohar are used to make natural dyes that can be used to colour cotton and silk. (Purohit et al.,Current Science; Vol 92, No.12: 1681-1682).
Each flower has five petals out of which four are spoon shaped spreading scarlet-red coloured and the fifth one is an odd slightly different speckled petal. When viewed under foldscope, the small glandular structures were seen at the margins.
A gulmohur flower has 10 long stamens that surround a short pistil. The filaments are long and bear basifixed anthers. The fruit is a strap-shaped flattened pod.
The anthers were gently teased to release pollen in Delonix and observed under a foldscope.
Pollen from young anthers
Pollen from mature anthers