In warm, evergreen Sydney we don't have all that many deciduous plants, and oddly enough my favourite deciduous plant doesn't even come from a cool climate. It's tropical, it's the frangipani, and it's back in leaf and fragrant bloom. Welcome back!
Easily my favourite flower fragrance, sweet frangipanis produce the same reaction in people as roses do. Without hesitation, almost everyone who comes across a frangipani bends their head to sniff the fragrance and comes up smiling. It is such a lovely perfume.
Grown from a largeish cutting taken a few years back (thanks, Krissy!), our little frangipani tree is doing well on its simple regime of 'no extra water, no fertiliser'. Just leave it alone and it should do well here in Sydney. In many neglected gardens in my local area the frangipanis are magnificent. Mine will take another decade or more to become a shady tree. It's a slow grower.
We often pick frangipani flowers to bring inside to float in shallow bowls of water for a day. As you can see there are plenty of buds forming, so the supply should last for months.
While there are many different frangipani flower colours to choose from, I much prefer the classic yellow-centred white blooms. A lot of people have told me that they do, too. Perhaps it has to do with meeting these, the most common frangipanis in childhood, falling in love with them then, and never having eyes for anything else. Some of the other colours available do have a touch of the bordello about them, garish lipstick hues.
I never tire of the scent of my frangipani. Most days when I'm out in the garden doing ordinary chores such as watering or weeding or whatever, I'll pop over to the frangipani for a moment for a 'hit' of sweet simplicity. It's my catnip.