Shunjur Ispru fervor dampened by pandemic


CHITRAL: The upper parts of Chitral have been flooded with the spellbinding aroma of Shunjur Ispru (Russian olive), but the residents regretted that the dread of coronavirus had diluted the fervor associated with it.

The medium-sized bushy tree of Shunjur is common in Upper Chitral with high population which fast becomes ready to be harvested for being used as fuel wood and needs no irrigation water due to which its survival rate is 100 per cent.

The blooming of its highly aromatic flowers has been named to a month of the local calendar, which have also been widely used in poetry and literature and many folk songs carry the description of the flowers.


He pointed out that a sonnet of 17th century about the flower of Shunjur was still popular among the people as almost everyone was heard muttering its verses.

He said that the former rulers of Chitral grew the thorny tree in their gardens in large number to relish its fragrance and fervently received the bouquets of its flowers from the visitors coming to their courts for courtesy or official jobs.

Mr Ayubi, however, regretted that the blossoming season of Shunjur was about to end but without any fanfare and festivities as most of the people confined themselves to their homes due to the coronavirus pandemic.


Abdul Rafi of Warijun village said that the green twigs containing the flowers of Shunjur are fed to the cows to obtain milk giving the same smell of the flower. And the honey obtained in this season also gives the same fragrance, he added.



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