"This tree is referred in the Sikh Scriptural enlightener, Guru Granth Sahib as follows: The semal tree is straight as an arrow; it is very tall, and very thick. But those birds which visit it hopefully, depart disappointed. Its fruits are tasteless, its flowers are nauseating, and its leaves are useless."
As a firm believer in permaculture, I find it hard to believe that any species is completely tasteless, nauseating and useless.
I have heard that the flowers can be used for soup and a refreshing drink, but do not much more than that. Can anybody shed any more light on this beautiful plant?
in the caribbean its known as sorel the petals are plucked and boiled with sugar and fresh ginger then cooled in the pot and strained through a cloth, high in vitamin C and a Jamaican Christmas Tradition. served over ice with a measure of white rum. delicious