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FLOWER POWER

Blush went Raj Bhavan as admirers too many went head over heels over its big, bright blossoms for nearly a fortnight this Valentineís month.

The magnificent, landscaped gardens of governorís house, sprawling over 62 acres, drew a record number of visitors this year as if it were indeed paradise on Earth. The hard work and meticulous planning of 40 gardeners, led by their superintendent Abdus Salam, paid rich dividends with the footfall crossing an impressive seven lakh, the first time in Raj Bhavanís eight-decade history.

British architect Sadlow Ballard had designed the imposing building, which rose majestically in 1931 at a cost of Rs 7 lakh and was complemented with lush green lawns, gardens, fountains and cobbled pathways. While the main campus hosts the larger 52-acre assortment of gardens, the Audrey House annexe flaunts another 10 acres of natural splendour.

Arti S. Sahuliyar recounts the power of 50,000 flowers