There’s no denying it, Bali is an island that is far more famous than Indonesia itself. In addition to its stunning natural scenery, we are greeted by the beauty of Frangipani flowers. In Bali, Frangipani not only adorns offerings in Hindu religious ceremonies but is also often found in paintings and souvenirs. Frangipani is like a symbol of culture and tradition.

History of Frangipani

Charles Plumier, a French botanist, is credited with discovering the Frangipani. The flower has the Latin name Plumeria and is native to Central America. This plant is also commonly found in Mexico, the Caribbean Islands, and Brazil.

In Indonesia, Frangipani is found almost everywhere. On Java Island, it is often planted in cemeteries and is considered a mystical and intimidating tree. Frangipani is symbolized as a symbol of death. However, the main purpose of planting it in cemetery areas is as an ornamental plant and a place of shelter.

In Bali, the Frangipani tree is very popular; almost every home and temple in Bali has this tree. Frangipani has a unique fragrance, and its crown comes in a variety of colors.

Types of Frangipani

There are many varieties of Frangipani, but the most commonly planted in Bali are:

  1. Plumeria Cendana

This type of Plumeria is very popular because its fragrance is stronger compared to other types. It is usually used as a room freshener and in religious ceremonies.

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  1. Plumeria Bali-Whirl

Plumeria Bali-Whirl has double-petal flowers. Each flower has about 10 petals. It is commonly used as a decoration and room freshener.

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  1. Plumeria Acuminata

Known as Red Frangipani, Plumeria Acuminata originates from Mexico, Central America, and Venezuela.

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  1. Plumeria Acutifolia

This type has larger petals compared to other Frangipani types. Although fragrant, its latex contains toxins that can cause itching.

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Functions of Frangipani

Frangipani has various uses, among them:

  1. Ornamental Plant

Frangipani has beautiful shapes and colors, and a pleasant fragrance. That’s why it’s very popular for outdoor plants. Also, Frangipani blooms all year round.

  1. Offerings

In some places like Bali, Frangipani is often used as an offering in religious ceremonies. In Hinduism, Frangipani symbolizes loyalty and devotion.

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  1. Making Incense

Frangipani can also be used to make incense. The flower is usually ground and mixed with wood powder or other materials before being shaped on a stick. Incense made from Frangipani has a very distinct aroma and is commonly used in offerings for Hindu rituals or as a room freshener in Spas.


Although not native to Asia, over time, Frangipani has spread to various tropical and subtropical regions of the world. In Hawaii, Frangipani is used to make lei, a traditional flower necklace.