Railway dump turns a leaf, becomes a butterfly garden

As per CR officials, the concept is one of its kind in the Mumbai division

Kamal MishraUpdated: Monday, June 13, 2022, 10:54 PM IST
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Railway dump turns a leaf, becomes a butterfly garden | FPJ Photo

A dumping plot at Wadi Bunder will no longer remain an eyesore and nuisance to olfactory neurons. The Central Railway (CR) has turned a 2,000 sq ft plot into home for 400 plants of 23 different species to attract the city's best butterflies.

For now, there are just saplings of Dark Blue Tiger (Tirumala Limniace), Blue Mormon, Tawny Rajah (Charaxes Bernardus), Striped Tiger (Danaus Genutia), Orchid Tit, Common Jezebel (Delias Eucharis), Tawny Coster (Acraea Violae) and Restricted Spotted and Flat. With monsoon rains, they will soon turn into heavy bushes that will sustain the entire cycle of butterflies. It also has jet watering facilities to provide a vibrant atmosphere in the dry months from November to May.

Permaculture expert Samir Paleja said India is home to 1,500 species of butterflies, and 153 are found in Mumbai. He added that the plants chosen for the garden can sustain the entire cycle of most species, helping them propagate. As per Paleja, the best time to spot them is from September to January. “At the Wadi Bundar site, we hope to see them by September,” he said.

As per CR officials, the concept is one of its kind in the Mumbai division. They said that in coordination with NGO Go Shoonya, they turned a dumping ground into this garden, hoping for conservation of endangered species of butterflies. The CR has also set up herbal gardens at CSMT and Igatpuri and a Miyawaki forest at LTT. Boasting of a collection of more than 120 herbs and 470 shrubs, the herbal garden includes ashwagandha, adusa, ajwain, bramhi, to name just a few.

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