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Youtan Poluo, Udumbara Flower

Udumbara, or Youtan Poluo, a special species, was found to grow in an aroid palm leaf at Viet Linh. There are various myths and stories about this tiny, parasitic flower. It is hardly found and is seen as a symbol of deathlessness in Buddhism.

Dr. Vo Van Chi, an expert on botany, directly came and examined the flower. According to him, currently, people still don't know if udumbara is a type of moss or fungus. There is also a proposal that eggs of lacewing (Chrysopa spp.), a type of insect, are udumbara since they look similar. These eggs usually hatch within 5-7 days at a temperature of 24-32 degree Celsius.

The photos below were taken at Viet Linh in December, 2013. We first saw udumbara in our balcony on December 20, 2013. However, we don't know how long the flowers have been there.

Hoa ưu đàm (youtan poluoudumbara flower) tại Việt Linh

Udumbara. Photoby Viet Linh.

Hoa ưu đàm (youtan poluoudumbara flower) tại Việt Linh

They look tiny and fragile, but have an amazingly enduring life. Photo by Viet Linh.

Hoa ưu đàm (youtan poluoudumbara flower) tại Việt Linh

Hoa ưu đàm (youtan poluoudumbara flower) tại Việt Linh

Hoa ưu đàm (youtan poluoudumbara flower) tại Việt Linh

Hoa ưu đàm (youtan poluoudumbara flower) tại Việt Linh

Hoa ưu đàm (youtan poluoudumbara flower) tại Việt Linh

The parasitic flowers look like to be in two different lines. Photoby Viet Linh.

Hoa ưu đàm (youtan poluoudumbara flower) tại Việt Linh

Hoa ưu đàm (youtan poluoudumbara flower) tại Việt Linh

Their heights are only about 4-5 mm. Photoby Viet Linh.

Hoa ưu đàm (youtan poluoudumbara flower) tại Việt Linh

There are 19 udubara totally in our aroid palm. Photoby Viet Linh.

Viet Linh © December, 2013. Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

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