A garden of rare fruit varieties in Dharmasthala

A garden of rare fruit varieties in Dharmasthala

 Neither have most urban dwellers tasted some of these rare varieties of fruits.
Thanks to depletion of forest cover, many such species are on the verge of extinction. Several fruits have medicinal properties too. Rarely, such fruits make an appearance in the local village markets.

Not many efforts have been made by the government so far to ensure that these rare fruit types are conserved.
However, there is hope still, in the form of ‘Nandana Vana’, a six-care farm in Dharmasthala belonging to Dharmasthala’s Dharmadhikari Veerendra Heggade and his wife Hemavathi Heggade.

“Such rare fruits from the forests need to be conserved for the benefit of future generations,” the couple say.
Apart from several fruits that naturally grow in the Dakshina Kannada region, the farm also has varieties such as butter fruit, passion fruit, litchis and other rare kinds of fruit. The fruits that grow in this farm are not for sale. They are left unplucked, for the benefit of birds. Naturally, the farm is home to many birds too.

Role model
“The farm serves as a great role model for the younger generation to emulate. It is important for them to understand the significance of preserving such rare varieties,” says Balakrishna, who runs the farm. He is all appreciation for the Dharmadhikari’s efforts.
It is important that such experiments are carried out across the rest of the state because desi fruits then have a chance of surviving in a market that has seen an onslaught of fruits from the West.

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