Who dunnit…

I was mighty pleased when I spotted some buds…

Ulam raja bud

…appearing on my ulam raja plant. Gee!!! So far, I only knew that the leaves were edible and eating them would bring a whole lot of health benefits but little did I know at that point in time that it would flower.

I thought it would look like a mini-version of the chrysanthemum, yellow in colour, but my blogger-friend commented on my photograph on Facebook and said that it would be pink. So I went and googled and saw this – it was a nice shade of pinkish purple, very pretty!

However, when it bloomed, it was indeed yellow…

Ulam raja flower 1

…and never mind the difference, it was very pretty too. It seems there are two varieties actually and the one with yellow flowers has longer leaves or something.

It looked like there were a lot of seeds…

Ulam raja flower 2

…and some people started asking me for them. I would not know how to go about collecting those but somebody said that I would have to wait till the flower had dried up and withered and then I could take the seeds.

It was very lasting, the flower – I think it was in full bloom for at least three days and on the morning of the fourth day, I was aghast when I woke up and saw this…

Ulam raja flower 3

Drats!!! Now, who could have done that? The petals were almost all gone and the seeds as well!!! Was it the wind? Or was it those birds in my garden? When I first planted the two seedlings that I got from Peter – he just pulled two out from one of the pots at his café to give to me, those feathered creatures got to them, leaving behind a tiny little sprig. I managed to salvage that and kept it under cover for a long while till the plant was big enough – let them come and eat, there would be enough leaves to spare.

It is now over a meter high and that is why when somebody suggested cutting away the flowers so more branches would grow, I said no way would I do something like that! Why on earth would I want more branches when we have more than enough for us to enjoy…and for the birds too! Let the flowers bloom and I can find pleasure in looking at them in all their glory.

There is another one now…

Ulam raja flower 4

…though I don’t know if I can get any seeds from it this time around and yet another bud has appeared too – obviously, there will be another flower soon.

Fingers crossed!!!

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Author: suituapui

Ancient relic but very young at heart. Enjoys food and cooking...and travelling and being with friends.

14 thoughts on “Who dunnit…”

  1. fingers crossed that you will get the seeds this time. I wonder how does raja ulam taste. I guess you eat them raw?

    It’s very popular over at your side. I used to see it at the ulam section at hotel buffets…but I never tried. An acquired taste, I think – the first time I tried, I did not like it and left it all by the side of the plate. Now I enjoy it.

    1. I don’t recognise it so I may have eaten it as I like to eat the raw ulam served in buffets but I don’t know their names except for a few like kacang botol and bendi.

      I’m like you too, I guess. I always told me Malay colleagues or those who love all the ulam-ulaman, food for goats and horses. Hehehehehe!!!!

  2. What a beauty. Exactly, have to wait till the flower had dried up & withered, only then you can get the seeds.

    That would be impossible. Two more flowers…and both have shared that same fate, a few more buds yet to bloom though.

  3. Isn’t this ‘Kei sai hua’ or Bunga taik Manuk? My late mum used to plant a lot of these but not sure if same breed n can’t recall can ulam the leaves. Was very popular planting back then n I think all the neighbourhood gardens have them…together with the Bunga Kertas, when the petals dried up it became the seedlings….SL

    Nope, not those, no smell at all, this one…though the leaves look similar – maybe from the same family, I wouldn’t know. No time for it to dry up, all eaten. Must be very delicious, darn birds!

  4. Such a pretty flower.

    The Koreans eat a type of aster, too (it is quite a huge family). I had it before in a Bibimbap. It had a distinctive aroma. It was most delicious.

    The reason gardeners snip off the withered flowers is to encourage the plant to produce more flowers. When the plant is allow to seed itself, it will channel all its energy into producing seeds and not flowers.

    I’ve seen people eating chrysanthemums too…in photos in recipe books or something. I guess they are all edible.

    I did snip off the almost completely-eaten flower, nothing has happened so far. Maybe it will take longer.

  5. Such a pretty flower.

    The Koreans eat a type of aster, too (it is quite a huge family). I had it before in a Bibimbap. It had a distinctive aroma. It was most delicious.

    The reason gardeners snip off the withered flowers is to encourage the plant to produce more flowers. When the plant is allow to seed itself, it will channel all its energy into producing seeds and not flowers. Just saying…..it is not a suggestion etc.

    Your first comment was awaiting moderation. You typed your email address as yahoo.co.y

  6. Those herb plants like my basil. Flower and then dried off and you could collect the seeds.

    Hope you able to collect the seeds and germinate some more.

    Quite impossible, it seems. The buds bloom…and soon enough, all the petals and seeds gone. 😦

  7. Some people put small plastic bags round the flower, and tie the opening with rubber bands. That way, the seeds will fall into the bag. I’ve never done this.

    Maybe I can give it a try, wait for the new flowers.

  8. So pretty the flowers! I used to have one in my garden but mine were pink. The ulam raja flowered like mad and produced so many seeds until there were so many ulam raja seedlings on the ground.

    So far none that I can see yet. One plant is more than enough for us to eat and enjoy. If I have seeds or seedlings, I would not mind giving them away.

  9. LoL! There is definitely something very hungry in your garden. Even your okra leaves are gone. They are on a feeding frenzy.

    Soon I will see all the creatures in my garden as fat as I am! 😦

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