Why axe trees when you can move them to a new place?

What if the much-hated steel flyover did not require the city losing 812 trees? What if the trees could simply be moved to a more convenient location?

Published: 19th October 2016 11:32 PM  |   Last Updated: 20th October 2016 05:30 AM   |  A+A-



By Express News Service

BENGALURU: What if the much-hated steel flyover did not require the city losing 812 trees? What if the trees could simply be moved to a more convenient location?
Trees can be replanted and Chennai-based Jeyam Landscape Consultants has been moving even decades-old trees in Bengaluru. “We get many enquiries, atleast 40 to 50 a month, and we have to decline some of them,” says B Illango, the founder of the company.

A crane placing a tree into
a pit in Bommasandra

Though the landscaping company was founded in 1994, their first tree transplantation was done in 2001. “It was in Chennai, a big Banyan from Royapettah to Mount Road,” says Illango. Since then they have transplanted 400 to 500 trees.
In Bengaluru, they replanted their first batch in 2006. “It was a mango tree and jackfruit tree,” says Illango, “and it was within the compound of a factory.” The owner wanted a new building but didn’t have the heart to cut the fruit trees. “His mother had planted them,” says the tree company’s founder. The trees are healthy and “the mango tree yields 140 fruits a year”.

Since then they have replanted in a few other sites. In Armor Plast’s Bommasandra site, they moved six to seven fruit trees when they had to make space for a new construction. Why? Monisha Bajaj, the director at this plastic-goods manufactoring company, sounds surprised at the question. “You are supposed to save trees,” she says. “They are fruit trees and they were fully grown. If I have to plant some like those, I need to wait for years.”

Vaishnavi Real Estate Group are moving around 100-odd trees, instead of cutting them out of the way. The project is titled Gardenia, with a stress on the green cover. “People like the greenery,” says its vice-president KJ Sheshadri.

“It a nearly 10-acre plot and we tried to save as many trees as possible with this,” he says.
You would think moving a massive object around on trailers is expensive but it is cheaper than a dinner out on weekends. “It could be Rs 1,500 or Rs 2,000 on an average, but then it could go up depending on the size and age. The costliest was one transported for Rs 75,000,” he says. But it gets cheaper with numbers. “Ten trees could be done in `5,000 or `6,000,” he says.

How do you pack a tree? “We mix the root with medicines to form what is the root ball,” says Illango. “Then we place it in a gunny bag and tie it up with rubber tyres. After we lower them into the pits, we simply have to cut out the tyres and the gunny bags become manure.”
Their biggest client in Chennai is the Chennai Metro Rail, but not so in Bengaluru. “Here it is mostly from individuals and companies,” says Illango.


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