REPRODUCTION OF SACRED TREES BY VEGETATIVE PROPAGATION
CONSERVATION OF SACRED TREES PROJECT

To scientifically preserve and propagate sacred trees and herbs which have social, religious and cultural significance, the CHANDIGARH NATURE AND HEALTH SOCIETY, a registered non-profit-organization, has established the MUSEUM OF TREES in Chandigarh, with support from the Ministry of Culture, Government of India, and the Botanical Survey of India.

Being the youngest religion in the world, Sikhism is fortunate to have several surviving sacred trees directly related to the Sikh Gurus. Since most of these trees are very old, the Museum of Trees has undertaken the project of conserving the germplasm of the sacred trees by vegetative propagation through clonal technology.

Vegetative parts of the sacred and historical trees are collected for preservation and propagation and placed in the Mist Chamber for a period of 30-45 days for the purpose of "rooting". After "rooting" of the sacred plants has occurred in the Mist Chamber, the plants are transferred to the Net House (Hardening Chamber) for maturing and therafter planted outdoors in their natural environment.

This technique of vegetative propagation produces the true genotype of the parent, which means that the seedlings produced through this method are the genetically true replicas of the sacred trees.

The Museum of Trees has successfully reproduced three of the most sacred trees of Sikhism- ber (Zizyphus jujuba) tree of Gurudwara Dukh Bhanjani Ber Sahib Sahib, Golden Temple, Amritsar; ber (Zizyphus jujuba) tree of Gurudwara Ber Sahib, Sultanpur Lodhi; ber (Zizyphus jujuba) tree of Gurudwara Babe-Di-Ber Sahib, Sialkot, Pakistan. These sacred trees are successfully growing in the Museum of Trees at Chandigarh.

This is the first report of reproduction of these sacred trees through clonal technology. Using modern technology for vegetative propagation of sacred and historical trees, the Museum of Trees , Chandigarh is endeavouring to preserve a vital element of our heritage.

The first and only one of its kind in the world, the Museum Of Trees (MOT) is inspired by the pioneering work of DS Jaspal in his coffee-table book "TRYST WITH TREES - Punjab's Sacred Heritage" (www.trystwithtrees.com).

In TRYST, Jaspal brings out a unique feature of the Sikh religion - the only religion in the world whose sacred shrines are named after species of trees - by documenting 59 sacred Sikh shrines that are commemorated by the names of 19 species of trees e.g. Gurudwara Tahli Sahib, Gurudwara Ber Sahib, Gurudwara Ritha Sahib, Gurudwara Amb Sahib, Gurudwara Imli Sahib etc. TRYST also reveals that at several shrines sacred trees have died on account of lack of knowledge and awareness about proper preservation practices while in many shrines, trees have been cut to make way for bigger gurudwara buildings.

The MUSEUM OF TREES is a story telling Museum which tells the story - the myths, customs, traditions and historical events - behind every tree that is planted outdoors or exhibited indoors.


    " I am happy to learn about the project of "Museum of Trees" in Chandigarh and hope that your efforts are recoganized and acted upon not only in Chandigarh but throughout India and more."

- Amitabh Bachchan


    "The Museum of Trees is destined to become an international landmark."

- Nek Chand
Creator, Rock Garden
Chandigarh
OUTDOOR RET GARDEN
INDOOR GALLERY
 
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