Ganga Tulsi, Gangotri: homonym or different species?

Tulsi, an aromatic medicinal plant finds its special place in Hinduism. It is often said that the worship of lord Vishnu is incomplete without Tulsi. But the species of Tulsi used for worshipping the deity varies from place to place. Be it the famous Vrindavan, Badrinath or Gangotri, the variants of Tulsi vary altogether. MostlyContinue reading “Ganga Tulsi, Gangotri: homonym or different species?”

Forest trails and untold stories: Mansur shrub, Landour, Mussoorie

Every step I take towards exploring the wilderness in the nature and forest, fills me with enchantment to ken many unfolded stories. Each rock, each pebble, each flower, each plant and their association with different life forms must have a distinct story to tell. Stories which will never be heard of, some lost stories andContinue reading “Forest trails and untold stories: Mansur shrub, Landour, Mussoorie”

Ecological indicators of season change (2): Ferns!!

With the onset of winters, the ferns have turned brown in the lesser Himalayas. The winter Himalayan breeze blowing through the mixed forests of Oak- Pine and Rhododendron signals the arrival of winters to the ferns, which grow alongside the moss laden tree barks and  hillslopes of this quiet hillside of Landour, Mussoorie. With theContinue reading “Ecological indicators of season change (2): Ferns!!”

Avian visitors of Oak tree (Quercus leucotrichophora): pollination ecology

The incredible task carried by wildlife in executing pollination is exemplary. Pollination in plants is a crucial aspect in reproductive cycle of flowering plants. Wind and water also play role in the pollination of many plants, but to witness wildlife getting engaged in pollinating is a fascinating experience in itself. How the appealing flowers, theirContinue reading “Avian visitors of Oak tree (Quercus leucotrichophora): pollination ecology”

Whipcord Cobra Lily: Plant mimicry

It’s normal for one to get startled when they encounter Cobra Lily for the first time in the wild. The trumpet shaped flowers along with whip-like tongue resembles as if a Cobra snake is lurking out and with its tongue. It’s monsoon in Mussoorie, Uttarakhand and Cobra lilies are in full bloom in the thickets,Continue reading “Whipcord Cobra Lily: Plant mimicry”

Biodiversity around me: Landour, Mussoorie

Three years ago, little did I know about the biodiversity in and around Mussoorie. I relocated to this beautiful hillside of Landour just after marriage and was deeply fascinated by the beautiful landscape and rich biodiversity. The whistling Himalayan breeze blowing through the tree leaves endows life and hope in each and every corner ofContinue reading “Biodiversity around me: Landour, Mussoorie”

Forest fire in Uttarakhand: Are we ready to tackle future forest fires?

This is one of the worst years in the history of Uttrakhand where frequent forest fires has been witnessed in various parts of the state. It’s been three years, I am residing in the hillside near Landour, Mussoorie and every year I have observed forest patches under flames in this side of the lesser Himalayas.Continue reading “Forest fire in Uttarakhand: Are we ready to tackle future forest fires?”

Forests and a ray of hope!!

Found a road, which was less travelled,With a faith of finding new hope;But to my despair, I found barren mountains,Trees cut from the valley to the top!! ***** Thorny bushes, scanty greens,With vultures hovering high;I searched for a river stream to quench my thirst,But Alas!! no sight of water, I sighed!! ***** Metalled road, scorchingContinue reading “Forests and a ray of hope!!”

Oak tree flowers: Landour, Mussoorie

The most simple defintion of ‘flower‘ is colourful part of the plant also resonates as something colourful, delicate, fragrant. But nature is full of exceptions, because there are some flowers in the nature which are neither bright nor colourful and some without fragrance yet they play significant role in sustaining the ecology of a particularContinue reading “Oak tree flowers: Landour, Mussoorie”

Tribute to the forests: International Day of Forests, 2021

The knowledge and conscience which we have gained today comes from nature, and primitive forests. Forests are the source of many mysteries and have played an significant role towards the evolution of mankind. If we look back into the evolutionary history of mankind, we will find that every aspect of adaptation and evolution of theContinue reading “Tribute to the forests: International Day of Forests, 2021”