One of the items for worshipping Lord Krishna is flowers. By offering flowers at the time of puja (pooja) the Lord becomes pleased with the devotee, and the devotee becomes happy at seeing the Lord’s form decorated. Although at this time of year in England flowers can be thin on the ground, and although it is true that I am no gardener, still there seems to be just enough to offer some kind of flowers each day.
Looking back through the entire year I can only be satisfied at the plentiful gifts that nature has provided. From Spring right through Summer to late Autumn there’s a variety of flowers in England in a wide range of colours and shapes.
For my own personal puja I use flowers for four different purposes. The first is petals for offering to the divine feet (esha pushpanjali); second is flat or trumpet-shaped flowers for sitting places (idam asanam); third is smaller flowers for decoration (idam alankaram); and fourth is flowers for offering as part of the arati ceremony (idam pushpam).
When I was in India I would buy pink lotus and small, white jasmine flowers: beatiful form and stunning fragrance. Here in England the flowers are of different forms and fragrances but beautiful nonetheless. Lord Krishna accepts them with delight as long as we offer them with love (Bhagavad gita 9.26) Here are just some of my English puja flowers:
Potentilla. Very abundant and long-flowering. Good alankara or decoration.
Buddleia, named after Reverend Buddle. Short flowering but very fragrant
The all-charitable, ever-abundant Marigold
Petunia, very good for asanas or sitting places
Fuschias or ‘Lady’s Ear Drops.’
Orange Ball Buddleia. Extremely short flowering period but great while it lasts!
Valerian. She reminds me of my childhood in Cornwall. Please don’t call her a weed.
Cherry Blossom. Along with the crocus and daffodil, the first flower to come after the cold weather.
Busy Lizzy. Colourful and abundant, easy to grow.
Winter Hebe growing right now. A splash of colour in the cold months
Snap Dragons. No English garden should be without them
Lobelia: Vey small, delicate flowers for decorating Krishna
Srila Prabhupada’s favourite, and so very fragrant. English, too!
In the depths of winter, these Snowberries can still be offered to Krishna.