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Forest dept intensifies efforts to keep up Mysuru’s Green Tag

They have planted 1,49,000 seedlings and have distributed 4,94,000 seedlings among the people in 2022-23
Last Updated : 03 June 2023, 21:41 IST

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The row of trees on Lalitha Mahal Palace Road in Mysuru. DH Photo
The row of trees on Lalitha Mahal Palace Road in Mysuru. DH Photo
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Mysuru, known for its cool weather around the year, and a pensioner’s favourite destination to settle down, recorded an all-time fifth highest temperature so far, in April this year.

As we celebrate World Environment Day, on Monday, there is some hope. In order to keep up with the tag of Green City or Garden City, the Mysuru division of the Forest department has intensified its efforts by improving the green cover and also, by addressing the issue of rising temperature.

They have planted 1,49,000 seedlings and have distributed 4,94,000 seedlings among the people in 2022-23. They have planted 5,400 of the seedlings by the road side, according to K N Basavaraj, Deputy Conservator of Forest, Mysuru Wildlife Division (Territory).

During this period, they have planted 9,000 seedlings on a stretch of 30 km, including 2,700 seedlings each on 9 km each in R T Nagar Layout and Rajiv Nagar First Cross to 33rd Cross, in Mysuru City alone.

They have planted 1,800 seedlings each on six km in roads and parks in Lal Bahadur Shastri Nagar and Vijaynagar Fourth Stage Second Block. They have planted over 44 varieties of seedlings, including flowering and small fruit bearing trees (to help birds). They include Banyan tree, Peepal tree, Mahogany, Indian Beech tree (Honge), Neem tree, Champak, Gulmohar, Tabebuia Avellanedae, Rosea and Argentea. They have given contract to private people to water, nourish and maintain the trees up to five years, so at least 93% of them survive, said M R Dhanyashree, RFO, Mysuru Wildlife Division, Greening Urban Range of Mysuru City.

According to sources, the Forest department gives permission to cut over 100 old trees a year and to prune the branches of another 500 trees in Mysuru City. So, to keep up the green cover, they plant saplings. In 2021-22 too, they had planted 1,15,000 seedlings and they had distributed 3,30,200 seedlings to the general public. This year (2023-24) also, they are all set to plant another 3,600 seedlings in Mysuru City alone.

Mysuru City recorded this year’s highest of 36.6 degree Celsius, so far on April 21, against its normal temperature of 34.1 degree Celsius during the period. This is an all-time fifth highest temperature recorded so far in Mysuru. Mysuru had recorded the highest of 38.1 degree Celsius on May 2, 2016, second highest of 37.9 degrees in March 2019 and April 2021, and third highest of 37.8 degree Celsius on March 8, 2019, fourth highest of 37 degree Celsius in May 2022, according to Scientist of Indian Meteorological Department, Met Centre in Bengaluru, A Prasad. Rise in temperature in Mysuru city is due to various factors like substantial decrease in green cover due to urbanisation, besides patterns of winter and rainfall being affected, Prasad added.

Bhamy V Shenoy of Mysore Grahakara Parishat said, “MGP too has planted over 40,000 seedlings over the years, and Raghulal Medicals provided tree guards to them. Despite efforts to keep up the green cover, the rise in temperature indicates we should have planted many more trees to compensate for the increasing population, houses, vehicles and their emissions.”

Heritage trees

Heritage expert N S Rangaraju said, “The Maharajas of Mysuru gave more importance to developing the green cover in Mysuru. Some of the boulevards, including the ones on Lalit Mahal Road (saved due to efforts of environmentalists), Krishnaraja Boulevard, Saraswathipuram Swimming Pool Road, Thandi Sadak in Mysuru Zoo premises, Vani Vilas Park in front of the court, trees in the precincts of Karanji Mansion, Princess Cheluvajammanni Palace (CFTRI building), are a testimony to it. There are over 500 trees which are more than 50 years old. At least 200 trees are listed as heritage trees, including a Henna tree, 140-years-old, at a house behind the Lansdowne Building. We lost boulevards, including the one on JLB Road. We must keep up these heritage trees and boulevards and come up with more such similar ones, prevent construction of buildings in parks to keep up Mysuru’s Green City tag.”

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Published 03 June 2023, 20:04 IST

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