- Around 70 citizens from across Mumbai right from Andheri, Chembur to Godbunder road, gathered at 8 am on Sunday morning for the 89 the Tree Appreciation Walk
- It was conducted by the two veterans Dr Usha Desai who had spent three decades as the HoD of Medicine in GM Hospital and Mrs Renee Vyas, a tree expert who had led enthusiasts on over a hundred walks in Mumbai
- The walk was held at ‘Vanaspatyam’, a medicinal Ayurveda garden developed by Somaiya Trust at Somaiya Ayurvihar Campus, Sion East.
Dr Desai started her walk with the plant which is used in the treatment of cough Adulsa or Vasa in Sanskrit.
One of the participants, at the event, came only because he would be able to see the Harda tree; the fruits of harda form an important ingredient of triphala churna an Ayurvedic drug.
Dr Usha Mukundan, Principal R J College Ghatkopar who came with a few of her students, said “I congratulate Somaiya Trust for the excellent efforts they have taken to develop this garden which will serve as green lungs for this city.”
Kiran Sharma, a M.Sc. Taxonomy student from St Xavier’s College said,” I am very delighted to see the plants, I had only heard about this garden, but I got a chance to experience it. It is very important for medicinal Botany course students.
Dr Ranade, a retired doctor and microbiologist from Khalsa College said, “After retiring one of my hobbies is to study plants and my thirst for finding out about the herbs were satiated because of this Tree Appreciation Walk at Vanaspatyam.”
Dr Usha, who conducted the walk, said “I have hardly ever seen such a well-organized garden and it can become one of the best medicinal plant gardens. What I liked is there are walkways so that people can walk around the plants. I am glad to find this garden. We will conduct medicinal plant garden walk once every year and popularise it among students. Another thing what I liked is that there are Sanskrit shlokas selected from Ayurveda which will also attract Ayurvedic doctors.’
Ms Renee added to Dr Usha and said “It is one of the best and well maintained gardens the city has to offer. People are fascinated as they have never seen so many species at one place before. We are humbled by the enormous response; we have received from the participants. One of the most incredible feedbacks we received from the student is from a lady from the group, who was undergoing chemotherapy treatment and continues to take amla and lemon shots to get relief after the treatment. This was amazing feedback.”
The Vanaspatyam has fascinated both senior citizens as well as students of Botany, Ayurveda, Horticulture and landscape architecture. It’s only garden of its kind in Mumbai. The Somaiya management has kept it open for public.