Eshwarappa is a member of Janadolana Karnataka and a photography enthusiast. In this episode of Eco Talk, he speaks about seasonal plantation. “Every year, we witness different seasons. During the rainy season, people start planting saplings; this culture has been passed down from older generations. Saplings in Bangalore are planted with the help of various organisations, NGOs and women’s groups. The problem with this effort is that once the saplings have been planted, people think that their work is done!”
Once we have planted the saplings, we need to take care of the plants that grow out of them until they reach a sustainable stage. Planting trees which are useful is a good practice but nowadays people plant whatever they get their hands on, which provides little benefit to the society. “These types of trees only offer shade; it would be more useful if we plant saplings which give flowers and fruits.”
Eshwarappa is also a volunteer with the Green Bangalore Campaign. He mentions that the BBMP has around 7 to 8 nurseries around the city, but they have few useful trees. “One can’t even name the plants in the nurseries! Bangalore used to have very land for planting trees. People used to grow apples, rice and coconut. But post-industrial development, the land lost its fertility.” BBMP also has some rules in place for the planting of trees – like, you can dig up to only 4 to 6 ft. to plant a sapling, but many don’t follow any of the rules prescribed by the authorities.
“We have had a very good rainy season this year. We can use this opportunity to plant good trees. But, we should water them whenever there is no rain. Planting is easy but maintaining and protecting the plants is difficult. We have to take care of the plants just as we care for our children.” Nowadays, the space available for plantation is either used for paving roads or to make footpaths. The new plans in the city have been placing lower and lower importance on trees. “Authorities offer different reasons for not planting trees. They say that trees are only for the highways and the trees which flowers and bear fruits can’t be maintained. Even the general public has problems with fruit trees. They worry about their vehicles – the fruits growing on the trees should not fall on them and make their cars dusty or damage them!
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