Despite its awesome name, Faya Lobi (Fiery Love), isn’t exactly feverish and wild. She tends to grow in protected residential gardens and her tiny four-leaf clover flowers blossom in neat, large clusters. She tends to create structured, centerpiece bouquets. Little girls spend hours stringing together Faya Lobi flowers, making necklaces, bracelets, headbands, etc. No, this flower isn’t fiery and crazy, quite the contrary, she’s neat, innocent and predictable!
Commonly known as West Indian Jasmine and Ixora in the US, Faya Lobi is widely considered the national flower of Suriname. Though Curaçao and Suriname were both colonized by the Dutch in the 1600s, the two countries were only loosely tied and governed separately. This changed in the 1920s when a group of Surinamese migrated to Curaçao to seek employment in our new oil refinery. They brought along their delicious roti, indigenous woodwork, Sranan Tongo / Taki Taki (Surinamese creole) and Faya Lobi… A fiery love for their home country, indeed.