SUBJECT :Northeastern State of Manipur is going to organise Shirui Lily Festival from 24th to 28th April, 2018 

Image Source - shiruifestival.gov.in

Where: Manipur, Ukhrul District

When: 24th – 28th April, 2018

About Shirui Lily Festival: The Shirui lily - the State flower of Manipur, and legend has it that the Lily is the daughter of goddess Philava who resides and protects the hills of Shirui. Commonly called as Kashing Timrawon, the flower is also believed to be a kind and protective spirit that rests on Shirui Peak that symbolizes prosperity and happy life.

There is also a story that has been told for over many years by the old folks living there for centuries that the flower supposedly sprung to life when two young lovers decided to jump from the cliff to their untimely death. The lily grows in the spot where that incident happened.

Lilium mackliniae, the Shirui lily or Siroi lily, is a rare Indian species of plant found only in the upper reaches of the Siroi hill ranges in the Ukhrul district of Manipur, India, at an elevation of 1,730–2,590 metres (5,680–8,500 ft) above sea level. It is located near the boundary of Myanmar to the east, Shiroi village in the west, Choithar village in the south and Sihai village in the north.

Flowering season:

They are seasonal flowering plants and at their best in May and June when it blooms. The peak season of its bloom is May 15 to June 5. The height of the plant is 1–3 feet (0.30–0.91 m) and has one to seven flowers per plant. The lily has pale bluish-pink petals but has seven colours when observed through a microscope.

Discovery:

Frank Kingdon-Ward came to Manipur with his wife (the daughter of a Bombay high court judge) for botanical research, in 1946. They set up base at Ukhrul in a building which they called “Cobweb cottage alias Bug bungalow”. Frank made the exciting “discovery” of Siroi lily, and named it after his wife Jean Macklin; it was discovered in 1946.The lily won the merit prize of the 1948 Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) at a flower show in London. The flower is compared to a beautiful and modest girl.

Myth and legends:

The old folks living there for centuries that the flower supposedly sprung to life when two young lovers decided to jump from the cliff to their untimely death. The lily grows in the spot where that incident happened. Legend has it that the Lily is the daughter of goddess Philava who resides and protects the hills of Shirui. Commonly called as Kashing Timrawon, the flower is also believed to be a kind and protective spirit that rests on Shirui Peak. It also symbolizes prosperity and happy life.

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Source: shiruifestival.gov.in