Flyover flowers on the wane

Gangtok, 23 Jun: Pots of flowers that had been placed along flyovers around town were a pretty sight but now most of them have withered and instead give an unkempt look to the town. Gangtok Beautification Committee with representatives from concerned departments including Forest department looks after the beautification of Gangtok including the flower pots along flyovers, informs DFO, Wildlife, East Division, Dechen Lachungpa. She adds that the committee is awaiting directions and sanctioning of funds in order to replace the pots with fresh plants. The beautification process started during June-July last year and during Dasain, marigolds had been planted and after that Antirrhinum, Phlox, Petunia and Pansy, etc. These plants lasted for four months [November till Feb], the DFO adds. “Most of the plants on MG Marg are perennial and can last longer without regular maintenance requiring only weeding and some manure. However, this time the committee thought of testing seasonal flowers like petunias to add more colour and variety,” says Ms Lachungpa. She further informs that seasonal flowers are a challenge since there needs to a continuous cycle. “Planting and replacing seasonal flowers has to be a continuous process without any halt. This is the first time the committee tried to beautify the town with seasonal plants and so it was like a trial round. Now the committee has got more experience and we are all working towards successfully beautifying the town,” she mentions. Ms Lachungpa further informed that sample plants are procured from Darjeeling, Kalimpong hills and also from Sikkim and shown to the committee for approval following which bulk orders are placed.