You can see it in almost any Sri Lankan temple. Its six pastel-pink petals and its strong, almost cloyingly sweet fragrance, are unmistakable. It is of course what Sinhalese people call the sal flower, the blossom most favoured by devotees to honour the Buddha with. The sal tree and its flower played a minor, but interesting role in the Buddha’s life. According to the Mahaparinibbana Sutta, the longest sutta in the Tipitaka, when the Buddha arrived in Kusinara at the end of his final journey, he lay down between two sal trees.