Dr. Singh leads a retired life after serving as agricultural researcher for 32 years. Writing about agriculture is his hobby.
Many plants including money plant, basil, jasmine, lemon, sage, lavender, roses, orchids, and rosemary are believed to bring prosperity, happiness and good luck. Shami tree has immense spiritual significance and its worship (puja) is believed to retrograde ill effects of Saturn (Shani). All the parts of Shami tree have various uses. Leaves of the Shami tree are offered to please deities and wood of the tree is used to kindle the fire in the 'yagaya'. Shami tree is worshipped to please Shani to subdue bad effects of afflicted Saturn planet in the birth chart.
Prosopis cineraria is the scientific name of the 'Shami' tree and it belongs to ‘Fabaceae’ family. It has shattered light bluish-green foliage arranged in strips along its slender branches armed with conical thorns. New flush of leaves emerges before summer. Shami is also known by various other names like ‘jand’ in Hindi and Punjabi, ‘jandi’ in Haryanvi, ‘khejri’ in Rajasthani, 'shamee briksha' in Bengali and ‘sami or samri’ in Gujarati. It is called ‘kalp taru’ due to various uses of its parts and also referred as the ‘king of desert’, and the ‘wonder tree’.
In 1981, Shami or Khejri was declared as state tree of Rajasthan. It is also the state tree of Telangana where it is known as Jammi. United Arab Emirates launched ‘Give a Gaf’ campaign and urged its citizens to plant Gaf (Shami) tree to combat desertification. It is native to arid regions of Western Asia, the Indian Subcontinent and survives even in the deserts.
Astrology, Vastu and the Shami tree
Plants provide not only food, shade, foliage and shelter but also protect the environment. Plants are capable of affecting human life by subsiding the ill effects of planets and bringing positivity. Trees and plants are associated with several zodiac signs. Shami tree is considered lucky to people whose zodiac sign is Aquarius (Kumbh) and considered beneficial if they plant the tree in the house and take proper care.
Saturn (Shani) is regarded as the judge (Deity of justice) that brings justice for our deeds. Importance of Shami plant is decided based on the position of Saturn in the horoscope that has direct influence on our life. Affliction of Saturn in our horoscope indicates that the person shall encounter many difficulties in life and will not find a favour from the luck. On the contrary, good placement in the birth chart can make a person very successful. Worshipping Shami tree makes Shani happy and protects from ill effects of afflicted Saturn.
Preferred Growing Conditions
Shami tree does not need much care once it is established. It is a small tree and grows well in moderate to extreme arid conditions. It is known to have a good degree of tolerance to alkaline and saline environments. It is difficult to propagate from the cuttings. Use 3-4 cuttings from a healthy plant. Since it is difficult to propagate, seed is preferred method of cultivation. Seeds should be soaked in hot water and scarified to break physical dormancy. Press the seeds gently in the soil and sprinkle small quantity of water over the soil cover. Take care of the baby plants and do not expose them to direct sunlight.
It is advised to plant Shami at the entrance of the house so that negative energy is prevented from entering the house. Shami should preferrably be planted in the northeast direction (Ishan kon). So on an auspicious day, buy a Shami plant. Take the bath in the morning of Saturday and fill the new pot with soil and plant a Shami plant. Place a betel nut and a rupee coin near the shami plant. If you have Gangajal (Water from Ganges), offer to the plant and worship it. Add water to the plant daily in the morning and place a mustard oil lamp near it in the evening of Saturday.
How to worship?
It is suggested to offer leaves of Shami to God Shani to receive blessings and remove ill effects of wrong placement of planet Saturn in the horoscope.
If there is any defect related to Shani in the birth chart, then the suffering of Saturn is eliminated by planting the Shami plant in the house and worshipping it. On Monday, tie a red molly to the Shami plant. Let it sit overnight. The next day, in the morning, open the molly and fill it in a silver casket or talisman and keep it in the vault, there will never be a financial crisis.
Place a small Shivling made up of stone or metal in the pot of Shami in the evening of Saturday. Shivling may be bathed with the milk and garlanded with chant of a Mahamrityunjaya Mantra. It is believed to help the person or members of the family relieved of diseases.
On Monday, tie a red molly to the Shami plant and open the molly next day in the morning. Put the molly in a silver casket and keep it in the vault. It will help avoid a financial crisis in the future.
It is suggested by experts if a person offers some black sesame seeds and black urad on Saturday, the side effects of Saturn's seven and half year cycle ( sadhe satee) would be reduced.
Plants Similar to Money Plants
Prosopis cineraria is also known as the Banni mara and erroneously confused with Acacia ferruginea in Karnataka. Other similar looking tree is Chinese lantern tree (Dichrostachys cineria). True Shami tree has yellow coloured bristled flowers whereas Chinese lantern tree has bicolored pink-yellow flowers.
Myths and Facts
Myth: Shami is a wonder tree and its presence in the house brings happiness, prosperity and good luck. Money never becomes deficient in the household.
Fact: There are no definite evidences that inflow of money increases with planting of Shami tree.
Myth: Presence of afflicted Saturn in the birth chart brings obstructions in the marriage of a person and putting a lamp of ghee starting in the evening of any Saturday and continuing for 45 consecutive days ends Shani dosha and obstacles in the marriage.
Fact: Few people supports this and majority is indicisive about it.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 C V Singh