Botanical name: Calotropis gigantea Family: Asclepiadaceae (Milkweed family)
This large shrub, which looks like a small tree, sports clusters of waxy flowers that are either white or lavender in color. Each flower consists of five pointed petals and a small, elegant "crown" rising from the center, which holds the stamens. The plant has oval, light green leaves and milky stem. The flowers last long, and in Thailand they are used in various floral arrangements. They were also supposed to be popular with the Hawaii queen Liliuokalani, who considered them as symbol of royalty and wore them strung into leis. In India, the plant is common in the compounds of temples. The fruit is a follicle and when dry, seed dispersal is by wind. The seeds with a parachute of hairs, is a delight for small children, who like to blow it and watch it float in the air. This plant plays host to a variety of insects and butterflies.
The flower labeled Crown Flower is ...