Mughal Gardens to be thrown open tomorrow

Visitors would be able to take home the souvenirs and gifts from the Gardens for the first time this year. Richly endowed with rare varieties of flowers like Roses, Lillies, Tulips and Double Pansies, arrangements at the historic Gardens inside Rashtrapati Bhavan were reviewed today by the President Pratibha Patil.

A vertical garden (a new concept of developing a green/floral wall), a Bonsai garden with 200 plants and a cactus corner are the special features at the green estate during the month-long period.

"The annual opening of the Mughal Gardens in February for public viewing is from this year being christened as the 'Rashtrapati Bhavan Udyanotsav', an official spokesperson said.

"This year apart from getting an opportunity to visit the Mughal Garden, the Musical Garden, the Spiritual Garden, the Herbal Garden and the Biodiversity Park, visitors will also be able to get information through an audio-visual presentation on the President's environmental initiative - 'Roshni' Programme," the spokesperson said.

"An added attraction will be a Curio Shop, where a variety of souvenirs will be on sale, ranging from key chains to ties, caps and t-shirts, all etched with the Rashtrapati Bhavan forecourt and building," she said, adding that this year people would be able to carry back the memories. Last year 3.5 lakh people visited the garden.

The Gardens will be opened to the general public on all days from February 15 to March 16, 2011 from 1000 hrs to 1700 hours except on Mondays for maintenance purposes.

The Gardens cover an area of 15 acres and consist of three parts. The first part is the Rectangular Garden, divided into four quarters, each with terraced gardens on either side.

Central Lawn is the venue of numerous receptions and 'At Homes' hosted by the President and provides a view of the garden. It is covered by Doob grass which was brought from the Belvedere Estate in Kolkata and still retains its sheen.

The Rectangular Garden also has several winter seasonal bulbous and flowering beds, with a variety of Roses such as Mrinalini, Taj Mahal, Modern Art, Oklahoma, John F Kennedy, Lincoln and Folklore.

"Some of the prominent and popular roses here are Christian Dior, Queen Elizabeth, Iceberg, Pasadena, Montezuma, Summer Snow, First Prize, Century Two, Amalia and  Bush Rose,"

The Biodiversity Park, which has deer, ducks, turkeys, guinea fowls, peacocks, turtles, parakeets, rabbits and migratory birds, is another attraction. Important medicinal and aromatic plants depicting their use can be seen.

Besides, vegetables grown in the President's Gardens will also be on display.

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