Himachal in full bloom for Commonwealth Games


By: Pankaj Sood

Solan: Come October and almost all glittering sports venues in Delhi will have the fragrance of Himachali flowers. Himachal will not only be the top supplier of flowers to the open market in the national capital, but will also meet the official flower requirements of the greening committee of the Commonwealth Games. The estimated 1.53 lakh flower pots across the five stadium and beautiful décor at all important venues will have predominantly Himachali flowers.

Flower producers in Solan are gearing up to meet the huge demand for their flowers for the forthcoming Games scheduled to be held in October. Many producers here have received advance orders from various flower dealers from Delhi. Now-a-days, these farmers and their family member are working hard to get high quality flowers from their farms.

Solan district is the highest flower producer in Himachal with annual turnover of Rs 85 crore. Popular varieties of cut flowers like carnation, glladius, marigold and rose are grown in Mahog, Chail, Kandaghat, Dhangil, Nalagarh, Kunihar & Dharmpur. Green house production is the latest buzz in this field and farmers are experimenting with all available latest techniques and seeds.

Madan Lal Verma, who started flower cultivation in Mahog village near Chail in 1990, told HimVani that now he earns nearly Rs 30 lakh per year from his flower business. He told that their whole family was busy in ensuring best quality flowers for the Commonwealth Games. Verma showed his happiness over the increasing demand for Himachali flowers. He said that as October was not the flower season in other parts of the country, Himachal would be the biggest suppliers of flowers for the Games.

When contacted, horticulture development officer (flowers) Dr Shivali informed that presently 56 hectares of land was being used for floriculture in the district. He said the government was encouraging floriculture on a very large scale and attractive financial assistance was being provided to farmers willing to enter floriculture business. A model flower nursery of the department in Mahog village has been providing high quality seeds to these farmers, she added.

It may be noted that Himachal has been already awarded orders above Rs 30 crore for supply of flowers by CPWD Delhi, while private procurement is estimated to be around Rs 42 crore. It is estimated that in the Games season alone, Himachal will be supplying nearly 23 crore flower spikes to Delhi.

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