Kalachuchi, Frangipani, Plumeria, Temple Flower, Flor de Mayo
Kalachuchi is a small, deciduous tree, 3 to 7 meters high, with a crooked trunk, smooth and shiny stems, succulent with abundant sticky, milky latex that can irritate skin and eyes. It is related to Oleander and there are more than 300 species. This flowering tree is a South American native, brought over by the Spaniards from Mexico. Plumeria flowers are most fragrant at night to lure moths to pollinate them. The common name "Frangipani" comes from an Italian noble family, a 16th century marquess who invented a plumeria-scented perfume.
The bark, leaves and flowers are used in folk medicine--considered anti-inflammatory, diuretic, induces menstrual flow, reduces fever, purgative. In Java and Madera, boiled bark is used to treat venereal disease; in Yucatan, latex is used for toothache, decoction of flowers is used for diabetics in Mexico. Source
In local folklore, Kalachuchi is often associated with ghosts and graveyard as they are often planted in cemeteries, flowers are used in sympathy wreaths. The scent of plumeria has been associated with a vampire in Malay folklore, the pontianak (tiyanak in the Philippines) while Balinese Hindus use the flowers in their temple offerings. In several Pacific Islands, plumerias are used for making leis; in modern Polynesian culture, it can be worn by women to indicate their relationship status---over the right ear if seeking a relationship, and over the left if taken. And on both ears if it's complicated---I made that up.*LoL*
"To be overcome by the fragrance of flowers is a delectable form of defeat." ~ Beverly Nichols