Bhubaneswar city administration urged to give priority to native species
Plant lovers have urged Bhubaneswar city administration to undertake plantation of native species which could withstand the strong wind of cyclones in future.A rapid assessment carried out by a group of scholars in Bhubaneswar says 99% of trees had suffered damages when Cyclone Fani crossed the city on May 3.As many as 1,677 trees having 10 cm girth were recorded along different road stretches in localities such as Kalarahanga, Patia Station Road, Jaydev Vihar-Nandan Kanan Road, OMFED Square to Acaharya Vihar, Acharyaa Vihar- AG Square, AG Square to Gapabandhu Chhak, Jayadev Vihar to CRP VIA Regional Plant Resource Centre, Niladri Vihar and Sailashree Vihar.“We had found 99% of recorded trees were either uprooted or snapped and broken. About 6% trees were uprooted and 5% suffered complete damage. As high as 57% of trees were partially damaged,” said Hemanta Kumar Sahu, a botanist who led the team.“Native species such as Karanja (Pongamia pinnata) and Chhatiana (Alstonia Scholaris) were found to have withstood ferocious wind speed of the Fani in Bhubaneswar. These trees with minimal damage will get back to much of its lost cover after monsoon,” said Mr. Sahu.Although the fig plants like Ficus bengalensis and Ficus religiosa survived Fani’s fury, most of their branches were lost. Kadamba (Anthocephalus cadamba) trees suffered heavy loss in the cyclone.“Native species such as Karanja, Chhatiana, Nimba (Azadirachta indica), Bahada (Terminalia bellerica), Jamun (Jambul), Amba (mango) and Arjuna (Terminalia), trees withstood the high wind speed on May 3. These trees lost 50% of their branches. These species should get priority when plantation would be undertaken in future,” he said. Meanwhile, government sources said 3,290 uprooted trees have already been replanted by State Forest and Environment department in Bhubaneswar. According to the department, about 5 lakh trees were lost outside forest and sanctuary areas in the State.