Native Trees for Urban spaces.:
I would like to introduce myself as a new member to this group.
I stay in Bangalore.
My group of friends are researching native forest trees around Bangalore and studying their interdependance on Birds, Butterflies, Bees, Insects and small Mammals.
We are in an effort to propogate these species by planting them in all kinds of urban spaces e.g
Trees for planting under overhead electric wires.
Trees for woodlots, parks.
Trees that attract Birds, Butterflies etc.
We find that these trees are most suitable for the amount of rainfall we receive, soil conditions, sunlight received, air moisture levels etc.
This kind of a model project can be researched and executed in any city or town all over the world.
Am attaching a rough draft of our project with ATREE, Bangalore.
We combed all forest areas around Bangalore, studied interdepandance and arrived at the tabulations.
Forests are living communities in which no single species whether floral or faunal, can be viewed in isolation. Each entity is linked to the other, either directly or indirectly, in a complex web.
The relationship between birds, butterflies, honey bees and other insects with trees and shrubs is one of very close interdependence. Natural forests, with their multi-tiered vegetation, have always been the ideal home for a large variety of birds, insects and other fauna. The many different forest types in India’s varied geo-climatic zones have provided ecological niches for forest-dwelling avifauna for feeding, roosting, nesting and cover. Birds, butterflies, honey bees and other insects in turn perform the multiple services of pollination, seed dispersal, biological control and soil enrichment, all of which, are essential for the health of an ecosystem. Perhaps, two of the important roles of forest birds are pollination and seed (fruit) dispersal of forest tree species. Insects too play their role in the propagation of trees and plants by pollination. An effective forest regeneration would involve understanding the inter dependence between flora and fauna.
According to a recent study made by Harini Nagendra and Divya Gopal, in a place like Bangalore, an overwhelming majority (Almost 77%) of trees within the urban limits is dominated by exotics like Copper Pod (Peltophorum pterocarpum), Indian Cork Tree (Millingtonia hortensis), African Tulip (Spathodea campanulata) etc. These species do not support fauna and avifauna as much as the native trees and leads to limited biodiversity in an urban scenario.
In this context, a study was made to understand the dependency of forests around Bangalore on avifauna and insects for pollination and seed dispersal. These forests are home to rich and diverse flora and fauna. As these forests are not very far from Bangalore and historically the vegetation of Bangalore was probably more or less similar to the ones in the study area.
Information gathered from this study can be used to select candidate trees or shrubs that are amenable for planting in urban situations to enhance local biodiversity. These candidate species can further be subjected for an analysis of their suitability for planting on roadsides, under power lines, public parks, gardens, around houses, botanical gardens, arboretums, farmlands, forest peripheries,afforestation programs etc. This suitability analysis will also take into consideration the urban conditions, space available, aesthetics, canopy spread, growth pattern, etc. This exercise will hopefully go a long way in replacing exotic trees or bushes that are currently being planted widely in an urban situation. It is expected that growing native trees with known faunal inter-dependence would contribute towards enhancing biodiversity.
These forest areas have been selected for this study as geographically they are not very far from Bangalore and historically the vegetation of Bangalore was probably more or less similar to the ones in the study area.
1. Melagiri(Hosur forest division
2.Banneraghatta national park.
3.Kaveri wildlife sanctuary.
4.Savanadurga state forest.
6.Devarayanadurga state forest.
7.Bangalore university(last remaining native forest in our city)
Ø Habitat photographs
Photographs of trees in flowering and fruiting
List of Trees lost during heavy rains or during monsoons
List of Trees damaged/uprooted during heavy rains in Bangalore
Period: 2007 to present; Area: Rajajinagar, Bangalore
MATERIALS AND METHODS
v Trees and shrubs survey conducted along transect routes.
v 2Km routes were selected with 15m belt on either-side
v All trees within the transect area identified
v Details on phenology
v Species were categorized based on their ecological value
ü Faunal dependence recorded
ü Aesthetic value
v Suitability of these trees for Urban situation evaluated
Results and Discussions:
Table 1. Trees for Highway planting –National & State
* I – Insects, B – Birds, M – Mammals
• Pollution control
• Shade giving/air cooling
• Tall trees
• Good canopy spread
• Absorbtion of solar radiation / vehicular glare
Table 2. Trees for planting on narrow roads– 20 – 30 ft
• Narrow bole
• Non buttressing
• Low height
• Aesthetically pleasing
• Non spreading canopies
Table 3. Trees for planting on medium width roads – 40 – 60 ft plus
• Moderately tall
• Medium sized bole
• Medium sized canopy
Table 4. Trees for planting in Gardens and public parks
Mitragyna parviflora(very imp. For Butterflies)
• Aesthetically pleasing
• Shade giving
• Ornamental leaves and canopies
• Fragrant flowers
• Flowering for about 8 months a year in a phased manner.
• Support butterflies and bird
Table 6. Heritage, long living and trees for gunduthopus
What are heritage trees – Long living trees and biologically important.
• Revive the concept of gunduthopus
• Ready germplasm of rare species
• Inculcate a love for nature amongst the people
• Provide a gathering space for local communities to celebrate festivals,fairs and marketing agriproduce(Santhe)
Table 7. Trees for general public
Table 8. Bee flora for Gardens and woodlots
* LO – Low, M – Medium, S – Small, H – High
Table 9. Trees with hollows for cavity nesting birds
Table 10. Trees that sustain nectar feeders
Trees for Lake shore planting
Table 12. Trees that have never been planted in cities
Urban Plantations – Current Scenario in Bangalore
Of late it has been observed that the focus is on planting only a few species in and around Bangalore, that too, most of these species are exotics like Tabebuia rosea, Mahogany,Markhamia etc Most of them are ornamental or with timber value.
These species hardly have any value in terms of supporting bio diversity and are not ideally suited for our Latitude,Altitude, Soil,Temperature,Rainfall,Moisture levels,Sunlight etc
The long term effects of planting such trees also needs to be studied.
These trees are also being planted in all available spaces giving an opportunity for these species to dominate the landscape, at the cost of endemic trees and other flora.
Species selection for raising saplings in forest nurseries are not planned and all seeds are generally collected from a single tree rendering a poor genetic makeup.Rules for scientific seeds collection are not followed, which may render these trees vulnerable to epidemic diseases.
Forest Trees of South India – Neginhal S.G
Golden Trees,Greenspaces and Urban Forestry – Neginhal.S.G
Research papers – Dr S.Subramanya.
Karnataka Forest Department.
Tamilnadu Forest Department.
Dr. S. Subramanya, GKVK
I can say d same thing abt Urban Pune dat most of trees around r exotics like Rain tree ( Samanea saman ),Eucalyptus species, CopperPod (Peltophorum pterocarpum), Indian Cork Tree (Millingtonia hortensis), African Tulip(Spathodea campanulata) etc. And also, these r d only ones getting more n more planted too . As these exotics r covering most green spaces der goes our birds n insects.
I wish to start same project at Pune.
About your Native Trees project at Pune.
I think some trees have started flowering in Pune.
Seeding may start from Jan to May.
Pl make checklists of trees around.I think they may be similar to ones at Mangalore,Udupi etc.
One of my friend wants to make saplings at Mangalore.
When you start collecting seeds, pl let us know…..we can share seeds, exchange info on germination processes, raising etc.
We work with the local forest dept. nursery and later collect saplings from them at the govt. price.
May be you could try the same as these nurserymen are experienced and are paid for the job.
Recently at Mangalore on Nov 28th, we saw Callicarpa tomentosa(flowering), Vitex altissima, Bridelia retusa(fruiting) etc in the Kadri hills,in the middle of the city.
thanks a lot, very interesting work my students and i are compiling a list of plants in mumbai which are effective dust capturers, these include both native and ornamental Also plants which absorb sound or noise is being experimented in control conditions hope to share this with you all soon
Native Trees for Urban spaces – Bangalore.: I am attaching a more readable format of our project.