1,000 seedlings of tropical, dry, evergreen species to be planted
The Forest Department is planning to plant 1,000 seedlings of tropical, dry, evergreen species on the Omandurar Government Estate, where the Assembly-Secretariat complex is situated.
A few saplings belonging to the species ‘Makizham' (botanical name: Mimusops elengi), Walsura (Walsura trifoliate) and Orange Jasmine or Kattu Kariyilai (Murraya paniculata) have been planted.
On March 13, when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh formally declared open the complex, he, Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Chief Ministers of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka M. Karunanidhi and B.S. Yeddyurappa planted the saplings.
V. Prabhakaran, Conservator of Forests (Chennai Circle), says the nursery programme of seedlings has begun in Velachery and Anna Nagar. As for the planting programme, the plan will be formulated once the Public Works Department (PWD) indicates to the Forest department the area in which the saplings can be raised. Anyway, it is likely to be ready by June.
Mr. Prabhakaran, who is appreciative of the interest shown by the office of Chief Minister in creating high quality green cover on the estate, says the idea is to raise plants suitable to the climate of Chennai and that will reduce pollution.
According to the documents furnished by the government, ‘Makizham,' grown throughout the country, is an evergreen tree whose height can go up to 16 metres. It flowers in April and fruiting occurs in June. It is a valuable aid in dental ailments such as bleeding gums and pyorrhoea.
In the case of Walsura, flowering takes place in November-December and fruiting in February-April. The herb is used for skin troubles and strengthening loose teeth.
Orange Jasmine grows up to 7 metres in height. The plant flowers throughout the year.
The Forest official adds that his department's plan is independent of landscaping being made by the PWD.