Meet Colonel Mahendra Kumar- the man behind Shaheed Smarak Memorial Garden
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Meet Colonel Mahendra Kumar- the man behind Shaheed Smarak Memorial Garden

The garden has recently been given Best Garden Award by Floriculture Society Noida

Meet Colonel Mahendra Kumar- the man behind Shaheed Smarak Memorial Garden

Shaheed Smarak Garden constructed in 2001 has won the Best Garden Trophy for the nineteenth year in a row by Floriculture Society Noida, which is a record in itself.

Col. Mahendra Kumar, director of Shaheed Smarak Sanstha who is himself a landscaping expert and has been taking care of the garden for many years talks to CitySpidey about his life, and love for nature.

"Spending time and working in this garden gives me a sense of peace and relaxation. To spend time in nature is God's worship because nature is a gift of god for us. Squirrels, Chirping of birds, and small red bugs, bees enhance the beauty of this garden creating a holistic ecosystem."

Also read | Know more about the award-winning Shaheed Smarak garden

Col. Mahendra joined the army in 1968 and served for 30 years. In 2006, he shifted to Noida and in 2010 he joined the Shaheed Smarak Sanstha. He has been the president since 2020.

The Shaheed Smarak Garden abounds in evergreen and seasonal flora. Colonel Mahendra informs us that they order plants from Chatarpur nursery and Greenways nursery. Col. Looking at multicoloured mosaic Mahendra Kumar tells us that they transplant about forty varieties of winter flowers every year. Moreover, last year, a beautiful waterfall has been added to the Garden. It was designed and developed by him further alleviating the grandeur of the Garden.

Colonel Mahendra takes care of the garden along with four gardeners and one supervisor. "The layout, planting of the plants, flowers is solely done by me. Every year, we make a chart and a plan to maintain the beauty of this garden. We plan everything accordingly keeping in mind that every plants and species have their requirements."

On how he takes care of the garden, he says, "Every day when I come for a walk, I spend an hour on this work. Then I come again after having breakfast at 10 am and stay here till 1.30 pm. And after that in the evening for one hour. It takes a big amount of dedication and zeal."

Colonel Mahendra says it is important to understand each plant to ensure its long life. "The Adeniums which came here from West Bengal cost approx 8000- 9000 per plant. They need good care otherwise they would start writing away. If one plant dies, all the efforts vanish away with them. We have to spray fungicide on them every 15 days", says Col. Mahendra.

Credits: Supplied

Apart from this, regular manuring, proper adjustment so each plant receives optimum sunshine and regular organic sprays. "We also use neem oil, red chilies with garlic in the sprays, cinnamon water works as an anti-fungal spray. Also, turmeric is very good for the plants as it heals the sick plants," says Colonel.

Asking about his efforts to maintain the garden, he says, “It is challenging to invest time in any activity. This garden also demands a lot of attention per day. I struggle to find time for everything amidst family responsibilities, but tending to this Garden is like worship to me."