review – Mughal Gardens Rashtrapati Bhavan New Delhi
dad has been promising to take me to the Mughal Gardens in Rashtrapati Bhavan every year, for years, but we finally managed to go only this year. I had visited the place as part of an excursion in the third grade once before, and have memories of it being really beautiful – especially the round garden. On this visit I was truly able to recognize the value of the work put in by the malis (gardeners) and landscapers to make the President’s Garden look like a paradise on earth (guarded by angels dressed as cops…ha ha ha).
The Mughal Gardens in Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi consist of seven gardens. They are the Herbal Garden, Bonsai Garden, Musical Garden, Main Mughal Gardens, Rose Garden, Circular Garden and Spiritual Garden.
1. Herbal Garden: This is the first garden you enter after passing through security. This garden showcases plants that are used in the manufacture of various products. Some of the plants in this garden were lemon grass and citronella (mosquito repellents), Damask rose (used in perfumes and soap making), aloevera (skin creams), garlic and some other medicinal herbs.
2. Bonsai Garden: This garden displayed about two hundred bonsai versions of trees, some of them being the Chinese orange, jade plant, banyan tree, bouganvilla, mango tree and tamarind tree. I feel sad for these trees as they are not being allowed to grow to their full size, and are being stuffed in a small pot all their life. Here, I discovered that a plant I call ’round-round’ because of its round leaves, is actually named the ‘jade plant’.
3. Musical Garden: After coming out of the bonsai garden, we passed a huge musical fountain that danced to the tune of patriotic songs like ‘meri desh ki dharti sona ugle’ (the earth of my country grows gold). The fountain was surrounded with a charming garden of coloured giant chrysanthemums, dahlias, giant pansies and lots of security. Surprisingly, I noticed a cage about 100 metres away with deer and turkeys.
4. Main Garden: After climbing a flight of red sandstone steps, we entered the beautiful Mughal Gardens with the imposing Rashtrapati Bhavan as the backdrop. The sky was bright blue, the sun rays reflected of the sparkling fountains and the air was filled with a heavenly fragrance. The garden looked truly magnificent with the wide variety of vibrant flowers blooming in the warm spring sunshine. Some of the flowers included giant chrysantamums, giant marigolds, dogflowers, giant pansies in all colours of the rainbow, red and white lilies, different types of roses, tulips and much more.
Before leaving, I purchased one bag of general compost (35) and half a bag of vermi-compost (Rs.20) for my plants at home. I also bought one Rashtrapati Bhavan bookmark (Rs.5), and a wooden clock souvenir(220). The arrangements at Rashtrapati Bhavan were pretty decent, considering the fact that no entry fee was charged. Bottled drinking water was also free.