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Flowers draw hundreds to Siliguri

- Over 2,600 plants and flowers on display

The 29th Annual North Bengal Flower Show began on Kanchenjungha Stadium mela grounds in Siliguri on February 7. The show, organised by the Siliguri Horticultural Society, will conclude on February 11.

The five-day festival has more than 600 participants from different parts of north Bengal such as Siliguri, Jalpaiguri, Cooch Behar, Malbazar, Oodlabari, Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Mirik and Takdah.

Flower aficionados from places in south Bengal such as Calcutta, Arambagh and Sodhpur and the neighbouring state of Sikkim are also present at the show.

The Siliguri Horticultural Society has been conducting the flower show since 1984.

“We made a humble beginning with only 300 potted flowers and plants displayed by participants mostly from Siliguri and the adjoining areas at Baghajatin Park. Over the years, the number of participants increased and so did the number of plants exhibited at the show,” said Prasanta Sen, the general secretary of the Siliguri Horticultural Society.

He said around 30,000 people had already visited the flower show and 20,000 more were expected.

The flowers and plants have been arranged under different sections such as bonsai, seasonal, perennial, fruits, roof gardening and home gardening.

One of the unusual displays is 2,000 chrysanthemum flowers also known “chandramallika” in Bengali in a single potted plant. There is also a potted jujube tree (kul in Bengali) bearing 200 fruits.

“This year, we arranged for the flowers to be kept in a green house to save them from dust, sun and pollution,” said Sen. Around 50 nurseries also have stalls at the show to sell their plants.

The organisers have also arranged for discussions on topics such as pollution and its harmful effects on flowers, techniques of rearing different flowers and how to increase their longevity. There are also buyer and seller meets at the event.

Dance, songs, recitals, fashion show, antakshari, sit-and-draw and quiz competitions have been lined up for children at the five-day event.