I finally discovered who sang every night in a monotonous shrill voice. The culprit was sitting on my folded garden chair in the veranda, trying hard to look like a leaf. His long antennae gave him away. The Katydid is related to the grasshoppers and the crickets. Commonly found in the tropics, it gets its name from its repitative call which sounds like "Katydid katydidn't". But my visitor's call sounds more like "tizi tizi"! The sound is produced both by males and females by stridulation- rubbing the forewings together. Their wings are good for producing piercing sound, but not for flying long distances.
According to some scientific studies conducted in 2010, the Katydid PLabycleis affinis has the largest testes in proportion to body mass of any animal recorded!
The yellow cosmos is a volunteer in my freedom lawn. Shocking pink ipomea on the fence. Pink dahlia likes sunshine. A beautiful ground orchid which has started to bloom now. The tiny flowers of Plectranthus'Mona Lavender' are a pleasure to behold.
With Divali, the festival of lights, just round the corner, autumn flowers are lightening up my garden. The golden blooms of the cassia are cascading from the bush in a corner. The azure flowers of the Himalyan Sage are also blooming in profusion now, attracting bees and butterflies. Next to the Himalayan Sage are the tiny white blooms of the Snake Jasmine, trying to imitate snow flakes. The pink Euphorbia flowers throughout the year, but now it is outdoing itself. The delicate flowers of the Galangal have just started to bloom now.
My thanks to Santilli, Denise, Pupo and Sandy Carlson for hosting Today's Flowers.
This 16th century cenotaph in Indore is a favourite perch for birds. The plants growing on the pagoda are evidence of the birds' presence. It would be a pity if this beautiful historic building goes into ruin.
This is another lake in Indore which has been given new lease of life by dredging and re-foresting the periphery. Now that the lake is full , the water table has gone up and the water woes of the people are at an end. My thanks to 2sweetnsaxy for hosting Watery Wednesday
Driving 100 kilometres to Mandu from Indore took more than 3 hours because of the traffic jams. Sometimes it was the shorn sheep being herded ... and sometimes it there were caravans of camels. There were also people moving in a carnival procession from one village to another, as it was the time of Navaratri- a nine day feast. The peacocks along the way also seemed to be having the spirit of the carnival.
My thanks to the team of Our World Tuesday, where you can see vignettes from all over the world, and participate too.
The gardens in Indore has native plants like the Mussaenda and... the purple Porter's weed. The gardens at Mandu have the romantic ruins as their backdrop. Well maintained lawns and neat borders are maintained by the Archeological Survey of India. This is the garden of the Jahaj Mahal or Ship Palace in Mandu. The walled garden of Baz Bahadur's Palace has the geometric pattern of an Islamic garden. It is lined with hibiscus bushes.
Santilli, Denise, Pupo and Sandy Carlson have this wonderful meme where you can see flowers from all over the world. Please click on Today's Flowers.
The Piplia Pala lake in Indore is now a beautiful lake with an adjoining park. Four years ago, it was hardly more than a pond. By the efforts of some environmentalists, it has been dredged, cleaned up and given a new lease of life. The idols of Ganesha and Durga are no longer permitted to be immersed in it. The little temple on its banks has many people visiting it.
The Malwa plateau is in the heart of India, where the historic ruins of Mandu are situated. Although the ruins of ancient palaces and fortresses are replete with the stories of conquests and battles, it is the love story of the 16th century Muslim king Baz Bahadur and the beautiful Hindu girl Rupmati, which is the stuff of ballads.
King Baz Bahadur saw Rupmati dancing, and fell in love with her. Rupmati agreed to marry him on the condition that he would ensure that she would see her beloved Narmada river every day.
The pavilion below is reputed to have been built by Baz Bahadur in one night so that his beloved could gaze on the river Narmada, flowing a hundred kilometres away. You can still see a glimmer of water of the Narmada, in the horizon on a clear day. Besides being an accomplishe dancer, Rupmati was a singer too. It was here that she is believed to have sung the raga Megh Malhar , and also danced to bring rain to the region. Rain water was collected in this pond for the queen's bath.
Rupmati's beauty and accomplishments were so well known that many people fell in love with her, even without seeing her. One such man was Adham Khan, a general in the army of the Mughal emperor Akbar. Adham Khan invaded Mandu and defeated Baz Bahadur. But befor he could capture Rupmati, she had committed suicide by consuming poison.
My thanks to the team of Our World Tuesday, where you can see and read about many places on earth.
Malva region in the heart of India is Known for its balmy climate and its flowers. These wild mallow flowers were a very common sight there. The rejuvenated lake of Piplia Pala in Indore had a beautiful garden beside it. Canna indica comes in a myriad colours. The Geiger Tree, Scarlet Cordia has bunches of tubular scarlet flowers.
You can see pictures of what is flowering now from all over the world at Today's Flowers.