Ghatasthapana and Jamara

Friday is Ghatasthapana, the first day of the ten day festival of Dashain. One of the activities on Ghatasthapana (as I just learned last year) is planting jamara or barley grass.

Having just learned about this custom last year, while watching S’s father plant the jamara seeds on the first day of Dashain, I made a mental note to look for jamara and try it out myself.

So a few days ago P and I went to the local Indian grocery store where packets of jamara seeds were on sale.

Last night we were video chatting with P’s family, and his mom and dad were giving him some tips on growing jamara. Later P found a nice article in the Nepali online journal Republica which gives step by step instructions.

Check out the 5 easy steps HERE.

I think we will do it tonight since I go to work early in the morning and the seeds are supposed to be planted in the morning. I’ll let you know how the jamara planting goes…


Jamara grown and ready for the Dashain tikka ceremony


2 responses to “Ghatasthapana and Jamara

  1. So…. I have a question. I hope I’m phrasing it in a manner that is non-offensive – I mean absolutely no offense by it.

    What is your purpose in following these sort of traditions, like planting jamara seeds? Do you believe in whatever religious goal/meaning there is behind them? Are you doing it just for tradition’s sake? Or is there something else?

    • I don’t believe in the religious goal/meaning, but it is away to engage with a festival ritual from P’s childhood, and one that would be fun and interesting to pass along to our own children some day. I like the hands on process of planting and watching the seeds grow over 10 days, then using the jamara during tikka (which we do every year). It was a lot of fun :)

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