Category Archives: Katy Rustom

News from Rashneh and Katy in Mumbai

Rashneh Pardiwala (below left), Katy Rustom and the CERE team  write:

rashneh5jpgkaty-5This is wonderful news that Andrew would like to develop a biodiversity park. Also we read about the amazing work the Stroud Community is doing in agriculture”.

(Andrew is beginning to make a forest/biodiverse garden in a Bordesley park. Molly Scott Cato helped to set up a very successful community supported agriculture scheme).

Rashneh and Katy continue: “Please do let us know if there is anything we can do to help. All the material on our Biodiversity Garden is on this portal: www.spbiodiversitygardens.com 

The Native Biodiversity Garden is spread over one acre of land at the edge of Teenvira Dam, in the coastal town of Alibaug, Maharashtra. The website tells us:

“This garden is an earnest attempt to conserve nature, attract native species of flora and fauna back into our ecosystems and most importantly, serve as a Learning Resource Centre for students, teachers, parents and all visitors . . .

“This garden showcases the beauty and wonder of native plant species. These plants form a vital component of our ecosystems by providing habitats for insects, birds, amphibians and mammals, being an important source of food and medicines and providing ecosystem services such as air purification and preventing soil erosion.

“This is an eco-friendly and sustainable garden, and visitors are requested to enjoy it with care. It is powered by solar energy with the aim to promote the use of renewable energy and uses drip irrigation to ensure water conservation. Pathways have been designed to facilitate wheelchair access.

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“The garden has 17 different thematic sections namely sensory, medicinal, butterfly, wetland or pond ecosystem, grasses, ficus, orchids, ferns, bamboo, palms, spices, kitchen, vertical, adaptation, celebration and a sacred grove. Most importantly, there is a special section on the Western Ghat species since Raigad District falls within this Biodiversity Hotspot where many species are on the verge of extinction. The garden plays host to over 500 native species of plants, some of which are extremely rare and unique with saplings having been procured from across India . . .

“The project commenced in April 2015 and in a brief span of 9 months, a barren plot of land was converted into a lush green garden with the plantation of over 45,000 saplings across 500+ native species.

This twelve minute film documents the transformation”.

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