Mango variety saved from extinction

KING OF FRUITS: The exotic cariety of 'Azam-Vs- Samer" mango which even Queen Victoria was believed to have liked. File Photo: K. Gajendran  

A near extinct mango variety, which was said to have won appreciation even from Buckingham Palace, is being revived by the urban forestry wing of the Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA).

Azam-us-Samar, the variety which is bigger in size compared to others and acknowledged for its sweet aroma, was originally saved from the jaws of extinction by a professor of Acharya N.G. Ranga Agricultural University, Mir Mustafa Hussain.

After long quest that spread over three decades, he located the variety, which was said to have been appreciated as the best of the mango varieties by Queen Victoria, and grafted it in some farm houses on the city outskirts.

300 saplings raised

To save and revive the variety, the urban forestry wing went in search of it and finally located it at Vikarabad. “We earmarked an acre site at our nursery at Tellapur and so far raised 300 saplings. These are growing fine and we are looking at producing more in coming days,” said P. Rajender Reddy, Director, HMDA Urban Forestry.

For the purpose of urban afforestation, the HMDA has 10 nurseries in the city and suburbs, which together boast of a collection of nearly 14 lakh seedlings, while the Tall Plant Nursery at Erragadda itself has more than four lakh seedlings in different sizes. Here, from ceremonial to avenue plantation and some rare species, are more than 30 species.

On offer at the Erragadda nursery, which is spread over eight acres, are saplings from few inches to more than 12 feet.

In view of the big size, they are offered in a price range of Rs.5 to Rs.150 per sapling and some of the rare species being raised here include the saplings of ‘Nagalinga’ and ‘Sita Ashoka’.

For HMR project

For the Hyderabad Metro Rail (HMR) project, this nursery has produced 40,000 plants and the same would be lifted soon.

The seedlings from here were also acquired for plantation in Visakhapatnam and even acquired by the contractor for Pune national highway.

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Printable version | Nov 26, 2020 9:46:01 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/mango-variety-saved-from-extinction/article3660943.ece

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