It is virtually impossible to miss these Magnificent and Large Trumpet Like Flowers in the  Rain fed areas of the Lower Himalayas from Uttrakhand till  Sikkim , India.

A Large Woody Shrub covered with Large Pendulous Blooms in Kalimpong, West Bengal, India  compelled me to stop the  car to have a closer look.

They were called “Dhatura”  by a Local Gardener and that gave me the first clue to research the name of these beautiful Golden Blossoms.

trumpet tree
The Tree of Golden Trumpets

“Dhatura” is steeped in Hindu Mythology as a source of Narcotic Drugs associated with Lord Shiva.

However ,the characteristic Drooping Blossoms  in fact revealed them to be Angel’s Trumpets ( English), Brugmansia suaveolens ( Scientific name)  a confusing close relative of the Genus Datura but not quite the same. Both belong to the Nightshade family Solanaceae and thus rich sources of  poisonous alkaloids.

large yellow bells
Gigantic Yellow Blossoms

The Angel’s Trumpets can be seen in various colours like White and Pink as well.

Their Seed Pods are long resembling a Lady Finger unlike the seed pod of the infamous Datura which has spiny oval  pods . While the Flowers are very similar on first glance, those of the  Datura look up like vases and are called Devil’s Trumpet.

yellow twirls
Drooping Blossoms thus Angel’s Trumpets

Brazil is the origin of the Angel’s Trumpets, but they are now Naturalized and fairly widespread in India.

These lovely enchanting blossoms carry  toxic alkaloids which create hallucinations and other ailments and all parts of the plant are poisonous.

The  Floral Twirls make my head a bit dizzy just by looking or is it just my hyperactive imagination at play ?

the flower

Inside the Trumpet

Is it not Enchanting to know that the Angel’s Trumpet and Devil’s Trumpet belong to the same family  ?

Published by

mukul chand

51 year old entrepreneur who has traveled extensively around the world for work and pleasure , is based in New Delhi, India. A passionate traveler born with a love for flora and fauna, is an active naturalist and amateur photographer. Here he shares his unique insight into Incredible India revealing its mysterious and exotic treasures. Writing from his heart he shares his experiences as he crisscrosses this vast and amazing land.

74 thoughts on “ENORMOUS TRUMPETS”

  1. It might not be a hyperactive imagination- you could be reacting to the pollen. Local “folk wisdom” in my part of the world warns never to plant a Datura outside your bedroom window lest you have nightmares.
    And from the reports I’ve heard from people who have deliberately imbibed Datura as an intoxicant, I’d say it was a “deleriant” rather than an “hallucinogen”.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. They’re a close relative of Datura called Brugmansia which is sometimes called “tree datura”. Both genera have similar alkaloids that can cause delirium, sight and sound hallucinations (often bizarre), and mental confusion among other things. Too much Brugmansia (there’s a fine line to that) is fatal. Otherwise, they are beautiful and fragrant flowers and so harmless if just grown for these.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It’s too cold here but some people grow them in pots for the summer. The true datura, which has thorny fruits, will grow here in gardens but I’ve never seen it wild.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Our summer weather is good enough for Brugmansia and Datura but the winters would kill them. Brugmansia is used by shamans in South America. Species of Datura were used by some Native North American tribes in a similar way.

        I’ve read a little about Datura use in India, that it is mixed with charas and smoked. Is that also connected with Shiva?

        Liked by 1 person

  2. It is interesting to know that these plants are from the same family. I looked at some of the photos of the angel’s and devil’s trumpets on line and found one photo that noted that the former faces downward, as if it has come from the Angels, and the latter faces upward, suggesting it is coming up from the devil, in hell. That’s one way of remembering them!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Very nice Pictures and informative comparison with Devil’s Trumpet. Never seen it from this side: the devil uses the trumpet to make himself heard in heaven and the angels use their trumpet to stir up thos in the lower realms. Tanks.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Actually, this Datura (or Brugmansia) is also native to many South American countries. Years ago I had some of them (yellow, white, orange) in big containers over here in Belgium. They grow incredibly fast and as they are not hardy in my climate zone I had to give them away. Some of them spread a delicious perfume.
    A few varieties exist here, as small weedy herbacious plants, called SOLANUM nigrum.

    Liked by 1 person

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  6. I tried to grow a small white variety of these from seed without luck but will try again. Nature can really serve up the twist…so beautiful, so intriguing..yet so filled with poison. These flowers just seem to have a certain magic, very alluring. Your post gave me some good information.

    Liked by 1 person

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