Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Living with flowering Kachnar

Four years ago, sometime in September when I had picked up a sapling of Kachnar (Bauhinia variegata Linn.) from outside my office and planted in the garden of my office the same evening I had hoped that it will grow and yield beautiful pink flowers in March-April. When the plant was one foot tall, a roaming cow chewed it up leaving only a twig in the soil. I was dismayed but as soon as the rainy season set in it starting showing signs of life and a few days later a couple of green shoots appeared on its top. The stem cells had worked. Thereafter, I protected it with a cage and now it is 12 feet tall small shrub.

This year it has yielded hundreds of pink colored flowers- very tender and beautiful on which the insects roam the whole day picking up nectar. There is no such plant as this in the Neighborhood, not in the entire sector zone of HUDA in Rohtak. I have regrets for the horticulture department, which did never think of planting flowering trees that yield beautiful flowers during the summer season. Dr. Mahender Singh Randhawa, ICS, who was Commissioner of UT of Chandigarh, had the idea implemented for Chandigarh and nowadays one can see hundreds of trees on both sides of the roads that are laden with flowers of yellow, pink and blue colors. Definitely, the sense of aesthetics in modern horticulturists had died.
Kachnar is not only a flowering Indian tree but has lots of aesthetical as well as medicinal properties that have been elaborated in the Reviews on Indian Medicinal Plants, Volume 4 (Ba-By) published in 2004 as series by the Indian Council of Medical Research. It was priced Rs.620/- ($40).

However, my house premises looks decorated with this flower laden three. My son Sunil has taken a few photographs of the flowers, a few of which are posted here for viewing and appreciation by friends.