Social Forestry day celebration
More than 350 volunteers including Desups, officials of Ministry Agriculture and Forests, Ministry of Finance, tourists and others planted more than 4500 saplings above the Samarzingkha ridge facing the historical Genius World Records plantation at Kuensel Phodrang on occasion of Social Forestry day Celebrations commemorating the official crowning of the Fourth King of Bhutan, His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck in 1974, last Tuesday.
The Minister for Agriculture and Forests, Lyonpo Yeshey Dorji, inaugurated the plantation. The plantation of 4500 saplings covered an area of 10 acres out of the 85 acres planned for refor- estation this season. The species of trees planted consisted of cupressus, chirpine, dogwood, melia, oak and others. In order to maximize and ensure the survival rates of the planted trees, the plantation areas above Samarzingkha is connected with water supply and installed drip irrigation system. The plantation on remaining 70 acres will be continued from tomorrow.
Similarly, the Social Forestry Day was celebrated all over the country. According to the reports received from Dzongkahgs, it states more than 35,000 saplings were planted by volunteers and more than 25,000 saplings were also distributed to the Royal Bhutan Army, Schools and other institutes. The reports said the species of trees planted were mostly blue pine, spruce, cupressus, acer and dogwood in western and Northern Bhutan while the southern and central Bhutan planted mostly teak, champ, walnut, bamboo, bottle brush and others. The plantations were reported to have initiated mostly in barren lands, land slide prone areas, parks, community forests, school campuses, etc.
The plantations across 20 dzongkhags were carried out in line with the executive order of Agriculture Minister Lyonpo Yeshey Dorji wherein all 20 dzongkhags have to maintain a minimum of 20 acres plantation plot each with timber species to meet the rising timber demand for renovation and construction of Dzongs and other religious monuments.
One of the highlights of the day is about 100 volunteers planted mixed species of trees at one of the most dreaded landslide prone area at Dorji Lum (popularly known as Rotpashong) in Mongar covering about 1.6 hectares. The other interesting event that took place in Chukha Dzongkhag in line with the genius world record plantation fever was 53 volunteers planted 500 saplings in one hour. Though it is much below the standards of world records plantation, it is an encouraging initiative to be tried by everyone to boost our forest coverage to for a healthy life.
At the end of the plantation, the minister thanked all the volunteers for their time and energy for taking part in the plantations which will contribute to building a better place for living.