The Forestry Department is planting hundreds, perhaps thousands, of new trees in several areas around Arunachala. Holes were dug before the northwest monsoon season, late October, and planting has started before the monsoon comes, so that at least some of the trees have a good chance to survive. I had shown the hole digging in an earlier post. This present post shows some of the trees, now planted. The success of the project will first be known after the April/May hot dry season, and then in about two years, as we see what survives.
Here is a map of the planting area (as far as we know). There seem to be three areas: between Leopard Rock and the Hill, in the area in the middle of the new “Yellow Path,” and in the area we call “Trees” near the end of the Inner Path. There could be more, since we have not looked everywhere. If you know of more areas, let us know.
We now see many holes that have trees planted in them. This is in the Yellow Path area. Trees have also been planted in the Leopard Rock area.
Some holes have trees laid out to plant. It has been raining, and you can see the water in the hole. I hope they get these trees in the ground quickly, so they can get the benefit from as many rainy days as possible after the transplanting. This is when they trees are most vulnerable.
There are a many saplings, waiting to be planted. They bring them here with a tractor pulling a trailer. You can see the tracking in the dirt.
With some trees, like the brown-leafed one below, we wonder if they will survive.
Others look so healthy.
Water is in the new water-retaining tank built near here.
Also in the Northside Basin. It is easy to see the benefit of the monsoon rains.
It is not all benefit, though. Here a tree blocks the path to Kannapa Temple, down after a night of rain.
This tree planting is very good work in reforestation of Arunachala. In a few years, as one walks the Inner Path, there will be broadleaf trees providing cool shade where today the walk is in the hot South Indian sun. Good work, Department of Forestry!