Trees are essential for our survival. Even a class V student can tell you that. So what new can I write about them. I have no intentions of undermining their biological and environmental usefulness, but the ornamental aspects of trees appeal to me more. Take a look at trees around you. Will you find such vibrant shades of green anywhere else in nature? Try to appreciate the subtle differences between the various shades of green and you will discover an endless source of entertainment. And if we look at flowering trees, nothing in nature surpasses their beauty. Many a times on a hot summer afternoon when nothing else cools our eyes the only solace comes from the flaming orange blooms of Gulmohar. Another tree which flowers in the height of summers is Amaltas and the bright yellow blooms look very attractive indeed. The purple blooms of Jacaranda come later. One shrub which is a riot of colors throughout the year is Bougainvillea. One can devote an entire post describing the shades and colors of various varieties of Bougainvillea. Magnolia with its reverse temple like structure and mildly scented flowers is another favorite of mine. Chandni and Raat ki rani are not much to look at but they smell divine, particularly at night. One flowering tree which has beautiful flowers and smells equally good is Harsingar, also called Shefali. The small white flowers with orange stalks finds many a reference in the poetry of Rabindranath Tagore. And all the trees I have mentioned are found in cities all around us. Just take a close look at them and you will discover an perpetual source of delight, something to make the tedious job of surviving in a city more tolerable.