All about Brahma Kamal Flower

Brahma Kamal is an Indian mythological flower that has many stories around it. Let’s get to know more about this extremely rare flower.

Significance of Brahma Kamal :

Brahma Kamal is the name of a species of flowering plant found mostly in the Himalayas.

Brahma Kamal is also known as Saussurea Obvallata.

These flowers belong to the thistle tribe of plants.

They are also found in many places in and around India.

These flowers start blooming after sunset, which is from 7 PM. It takes around 2 hours to bloom completely up to 8 inches in diameter and remain open the whole night.

brahma kamal flower
Brahma Kamal

What’s astonishing is that It blooms only one night throughout the year. As it blooms, it releases a beautiful fragrance in the atmosphere. However, some people may not like this smell as it’s so strong.

These flowers bloom in mid-monsoon that is between July and August on the hillside at an altitude of around 4000m.

These flowers can be seen till mid-October after which the plant will get perished, and it will be visible again in April.

Brahma Kamal plants are extremely rare and are famous not only for their beautiful flowers but also for their role in traditional medicine.

Since the plant resembles cactus and flower has orchid beauty, it is also called as Orchid Cactus.

It is commonly known as “Queen of the night”, “Lady of the night”, and “Night Blooming Cereus” because of its blooming nature during the night. Other flowers that bloom at night

Brahma Kamal is considered as a sacred plant in India.

People believed to be lucky enough who see it bloom. Brahma Kamal is named after Brahma the creator of Universe and so it is also called as “King of Himalayan Flowers”.

We came to know Brahma Kamal as a holy flower from our Puranas.

Brahma Kamal is the state flower of “Devabhumi”, which is also called as “Land of Gods”, that is Uttarakhand, India.

Brahma Kamal flowers are offered in the hill temples of Uttarakhand, like Kedarnath, Badrinath and Tunganath.

Botanical Features of Brahma Kamal:

Brahma Kamal has a stout stem with 15cms-45cms long.

The flower head is covered with yellow bracts which are boat-shaped.

Flowers look beautiful but their smell is not much comfortable and this might be one of the reasons for people for not bringing this plant home.

Brahma Kamal is categorised as endangered by the Conservation Assessment Management Plan.

It is identified as endangered due to anthropogenic pressure on these species.

Brahma Kamal on a mountain
Brahma Kamal growing wild on a mountain

How to grow Brahma Kamal:

Brahma Kamal usually emerges from leaves, which are thick and flat and the leaves cover the stem.

The plant usually grows from cuttings. These plants never grow tall.

It must be planted before winter as it is adapted to cool weather.

Rough soil from mountains is required for this plant to grow as this soil retains less water. Brahma Kamal is a cactus type, so it won’t need much water and can be watered every two or three days.

If it is overwatered, it may get waterlogged which results in loss of the plant.

It must be half shed and half-light.

It blooms only one night and you must be lucky enough to see it bloom.

It is believed that getting Brahma Kamal as a gift is better than buying it in the market.

Use of Brahma Kamal in traditional medicine:

The entire plant of Brahma Kamal is used as a remedy for human diseases and it is not clinically proven though.

It is helpful to treat fevers. The flowers, leaves are used for the treatment of cough, cold, bone ache and intestinal ailments.

The rhizomes are used as antiseptic and for healing.

The plant is used in the paralysis treatment which is known to be the Tibetan system of medicine.

Brahma Kamal Extinction and its protection:

Due to its high medicinal values and demand, many tourists, as well as local people, are picking up these plants which make them become extinct and needs protection.

Many people are involved in smuggling Brahma Kamal and other plants that are related to the same species as they fetch a high price in the black market due to its medicinal value.

Government is taking measures to protect these plants from plucking and farming it in confined places in altitude regions.

Conservation measures should be taken through the establishment of nurseries in particular areas adjoining conventional methods of propagation.

Postage stamps have been issued by the India Postal Department to commemorate this beautiful flower.

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FAQ about Brahma Kamal

Is Brahma Kamal Considered Lucky?

Yes, Brahma Kamal has great significance in Indian mythology and is considered lucky. Witnessing the blooming Brahma Kamal is not easy as it’s rare flower that only blooms during night time, and that too only once a year. This flower is named after god of creation: Brahma

What is Brahma Kamal called in English?

The English name of Brahma Kamal is Night-blooming Cereus or Saussurea. It belongs to cactaceae botanical family

What is the medicinal use of Brahma Kamal?

Brahma Kamal is said to have numerous medicinal benifits. Although it’s not clinically proven. It aids in treatment fever, cough, cold, bone ache, paralysis treatment, liver inflamation, wounds, intestinal ailments, etc.

Where is Brahma Kamal Found?

In India, Brahma kamal is found in high mountain habitats. This includes Himalayan ranges of Sikkim, Kashmir, Garhwal, Hemkund, Kedarnath and Chamoli. This includes Ladakh and Spiti Valley.