Dwarka: Cuscuta commonly known as ‘Amarbel’ is now posing a great risk to the greenery of the sub city these days. Be it road side plants or trees or the horticulture of a park or green areas - all are getting affected with the parasite leading a slow death. The devastating effect of Amarbel can be seen easily on trees and plants at Sector 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17, 22, 23, 20, 8, 18, and 19 etc.
Morning walkers and the nature lovers have been witnessing its growth all across the city. An environment activist from Dwarka, Diwan Singh says, “I have noticed the parasites on the vegetation in various sectors this time. The attack is damaging the greenery of the area.”
The plants with new leaves and shrubs besides the roads have been attacked by such parasites. “I have witnessed that in Sector 12. The effect is worst on the greenery. In my every day notice during morning walk for five years, I must say that this time the cuscuta affect is much greater than previous years. DDA must look into the matter seriously,” said T Sampat Kumar, a resident of Vikram Nagar CGHS (Cooperative Group Housing Society), Sector 12.
In various sectors, the parasites can be seen in parks, along the major roads of the city, service lanes, etc. Trees and particularly ornamental plants are getting infected with Amarbel.
A resident of Sector 17, RK Sharma says, “It seems that DDA horticulture officials are a bit causal about such parasites as many grown-up trees have gone dry. Though affected plants take time to ‘die’, DDA should take early steps to get rid of the menace. After pruning shrubs on the dividers, DDA officials disappear for the next six-seven months. The horticulture department should look into the matter to save our greenery.”
Vijay Dhasmana, naturalist and ecological conservator says, “Cuscuta is a dangerous parasite plant, marring the beauty of the areas killing the plants. These are parasitic plants which suck their food from the host plants and finally cause the death of host plants. These need to be trimmed and removed at an early stage to save or ensure good health and growth of plants. These should be manually removed by the horticulture department as soon as possible.”
He further added, “Such parasites spread from one tree to another by ‘carriers’. Theses parasites are carried by the birds in their excreta. Though such parasites are sticky in nature, the excreta of the birds stick on the branches of the trees and thus cuscuta reproduce itself. These plants are like green thread and mainly affect the arid area’s plants.”