What is the State Flower of West Bengal?

Ans: Night-flowering Jasmine

Night Flowering Jasmine, Nyctanthes arbor-tristis or Parijat is West Bengal’s state flower. Native to South Asia and Southeast Asia, this flower grows to be a small tree or shrub and has fragrant orange-red flowers shooting from bark.  The flowers wilt and lose their sheen in daytime and hence, called tree of sorrow. Even its botanical name, arbor-tristis translates into ‘sad tree.’

Parijat also features prominently in Hindu mythology and is described as a product of Samundra Manthan.  In fact, it is believed that when Lord Krishna’s wife Satybhama demanded parijat flowers, he had to fight with Indra for them. While Satyabhama had the tree in her backyard, but the flowers kept falling in the compound of Krishna’s devoted wife Rukmini.