Parasol flowers behind Thai Hoa Palace have shed their leaves and now brag with their lively baby pink blooms, softening the sharp edges of nearby buildings.
Parasol flowers are in full bloom throughout the Imperial City of Hue:
Nguyen Dynasty Emperor Minh Mang’s parasol flowers are in full bloom throughout the Imperial City of Hue, ancient capital of Vietnam.
An eerie quiet has set upon the former Imperial City in central Vietnam, ordered to close due to the coronavirus pandemic. These days, vibrant parasol flowers, also known as ngo dong flowers, tickle the landmark pink.
Parasol trees behind Thai Hoa Palace have shed their leaves and now brag with their lively baby pink blooms, softening the sharp edges of nearby buildings.
In former times, the shedding of parasol tree leaves signaled the arrival of fall. Oddly enough, parasol flowers in the Imperial City of Hue defiantly bloom at the end of spring into the start of summer. Compared to previous years, the citadel’s ngo dong flowers show a deeper, more brilliant tint this year.
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With its unique color and eye-catching shape, parasol flowers draw many tourists to the Imperial City. However, few visitors will get the chance to contemplate the blossoms this year as the historical attraction temporarily closes to help contain the coronavirus pandemic.
In the 19th century, King Minh Mang (ruling from 1820-1841) ordered his subordinates to bring back parasol tree seeds from China. The premises of Thai Hoa Palace, the front yard of Can Chanh Palace and other important spots were first chosen to plant the seeds.
Tightly associated to the second Nguyen Dynasty emperor, the flower was engraved on Nhan Dinh, a copper cauldron dedicated to Minh Mang in front of ancestral temple The Mieu.
Parasol flowers exude a light pink-purplish tint, making for a unique sight. According to locals, the color of these blooms hints at the purple traditional ao dai costume that is a signature of Hue ladies.
Branches of ngo dong flowers add a faint pink to the imperial landscape and compliment the coiled dragon on the roof of Thai Hoa Palace.
A parasol tree blossoms in the shadow of sunset.