Fascinating World of the Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden
The Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden was founded by Colonel Robert Kyd in the year 1787. He was an officer with the British East India Company and for him, the main purpose of establishing the garden was to cash in on the commercial value of the plants and grow spices of commercial value. The very acknowledgment by Joseph Dalton Hooker who said that the credit of tea-trade in Assam and Himalayan regions go to the superintendents of the gardens of Calcutta and Saharanpur, who introduced tea plants from China.
The garden was also known as Calcutta Botanical Garden, Indian Botanic Garden, and Royal Botanic Garden.
The design of the Kolkata Botanical garden was proposed by Colonel Alexander Kyd to the then Governor General Lord Cornwallis. It was also called Company bagan or East India Company’s Garden. The design went through major changes and overhaul initiated by Sir George King in 1872. It is his contribution that the garden is considered to be one of the most amazing landscaped gardens, which are split into sections on the basis of trees sourced from various parts of country and world. The artificial lakes are just the bonus here.
After Independence, the garden was renamed as Indian Botanic Garden in the year 1950.
The present title was given on June 25, 2009, to honor the Bengali genius and scientist, Jagdish Chandra Bose.
The garden maintains a strict policy against plastic and littering. It is a no-plastic zone.
The famous botanist William Roxburgh was also its designated superintendent and he introduced major changes in the design as well as the structure of the park. In 1973, he brought plants from all over the country and started a herbarium. The dried plant specimen was evolved to an extent of having 2,500,000 plants and became the Central National Herbarium.
Hooker has also written about the contribution of Roxburgh of bringing ornamental and tropical plants to the garden. Since then, the garden has displayed attractive plants, medicinal plants and food plants to ensure the economic benefit of Indian demographics as well.
Apart from being a home to 12,000 perennial plants of 1,400 species, the garden has much more to it. It has conservatories, glass houses, greenhouses and 25 divisions of herbaceous plants. The garden is the major center of horticultural and botanical research in India. The greenery and plants are a major inspiration for educational and development research. Apart from students and researchers, the garden also seems to attract photo walkers and tourists from all over the world due to its natural opulence it offers.
Location Of Botanical Garden in Kolkata:
The Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden is located in Shibpur, Howrah. The garden is located on the Howrah side of Hoogly River and is on the West side of Kolkata City Centre. Sprawled across 109 hectares and showcasing 12,000 exhibits, this garden is mainly governed by Botanical Survey of India of Ministry of Environment and Forests, GOI.
Entry Fee at Botanical Garden
The management charges Rs. 5 per head and if you are bringing a camera along, you need to declare at the entrance. You need to pay Rs. 10 for a camera.
Morning to evening
Closed on public holidays
Ideal Time to Visit the Botanical Garden
October to March
- The garden is one of the largest and oldest green reserves in South East Asia.
- Please note that the garden is a no-plastic, no-litter and non-smoking
- Its founding father is Lieutenant Colonel Robert Kyd and it was established in the year 1787.
- As of now, the garden is home to over 12,000 perennial plant species and hundreds of dried plants from all over the world.
- Apart from Robert Kyd as the first honorary superintendent, the contributions by Dr. George King, Thomas Anderson and William Roxburgh have been significant in deciding what the garden is being hailed as today.
- The latest census was conducted in the year 2007 and according to figures revealed; there are 14,000 species of trees and 13,722 species of plants. Out of these 500 species are considered endangered or rare.
- The Great Banyan Tree remains the prime attraction of the garden. It is the biggest banyan tree in the world and forms the second largest canopy.
- The garden brings a rare water lily, Victoria Amazonica to you.
- Here you can find trees from all over the world. The garden boasts from exotic species from Nepal, Penang, Java, Sumatra and Brazil find a place to stay. So, while you are there, you can spot Mahogany trees, Cuban palms, mango trees, tamarind trees as well as dedicated space to orchids and cactus.
- Coconut tree from Sicily, the mad tree, collection of aquatic plants and exotic selection of bamboo, citrus, jasmine, water lilies, ferns, creepers, hibiscus, ficus and bougainvillea can be found here in their pristine state.
- Exotic plants such as giant water lilies, bread fruit tree, double coconut, Krishnabot, the Shivalinga tree and water lilies have found a home in Kolkata Botanical Garden.
- Serpentine Lake for boating is also open for the visitors.
- If you love to read the history of fauna and flora and the garden, don’t forget to visit the library section.