Prayer Flags in the Garden


Strings of Prayer Flags or Lung ta are a common sight on mountain passes across Nepal, Bhutan and Tibet. The coloured flags are printed with prayers that are believed to be picked up by the wind and blown far and wide, spreading the messages of peace, goodwill and harmony far and wide. The colours of the flags are associated with the elements: blue symbolizes sky; white the air and wind; red fire; green water and yellow the earth.

The image on the right above shows a carved printing block in  wood from Bhutann featuring the wind horse symbol.
Strings of prayer flags that have appeared in the RBGE this week and the Autumn breezes will be helping to spread mantras of peace across our Garden and beyond. They coincide with our exhibition on the Flora of Nepal in the John Hope Gateway that celebrates 200 years of collaboration with Nepal through an exhibition of botanical paintings. The Lung ta have been sited near the new Nepalese plantings at the top of ‘stove brae’ near Inverleith House and will dramatically lit during Botanics Lights event to highlight our important association with botanical endeavour in the Himalayan region.
The spectacular Botanics Lights event Explore runs from 13 October to 6 November and you can find more information or book tickets on-line at

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  1. John Pendrey

    Autumn Prayers

    Above me,
    beneath me,
    falling to earth,
    Autumn prayers.