Mughal Gardens to open for public Saturday

New Delhi, Feb 12 (IANS) There’s Christian Dior, Queen Elizabeth and First Prize. There’s also Macho Man and Just Joey. Confused? These are the names of some of the flowers that are in full bloom in the beautiful Mughal Gardens at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. The gardens will be open to the public for a month from Feb 13.

A kaleidoscope of varied hues, the gardens have long attracted enthusiastic visitors every year when they are opened for public viewing, around this time of the year, for a month. According to Archana Datta, spokesperson of the Rashtrapati Bhavan, last year 5.75 lakh people visited the gardens.

On Friday, President Pratibha Patil, dressed in a bright blue sari took a walk around the gardens and posed for photographs by the media.

‘It’s beautiful, isn’t it?’ she remarked, as she walked along the beds of red, orange, yellow coloured hybrid roses and popular roses like Christian Dior, Queen Elizabeth, Iceberg, Pasadena, First Prize and Century Two.

Besides roses, the 15 acre gardens also have other flowers like petunias, phlox, poppies, marigolds, calendula, tulips and dahlias. The Butterfly garden which is a huge terraced bowl lined with various fragrant bulbs and a bubble fountain at the centre is yet another attraction.

While neatly segmented green patches of carpet grass with different varieties of flowers welcomes one to the gardens, two new features – that of a cactus corner and a bonsai segment – await to be discovered for the first time.

Different sized and coloured cacti and exquisite bonsai plants – like Pilkin which was planted in 1925 – are a part of the new section.

Then there is the herbal garden, spiritual garden, musical garden and the biodiversity park with a wide range of plants. There is also a Purdah garden, so called because of the patches of rose beds enclosed by high walls.

The gardens will be open for public viewing from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m until March 11.

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