How Mungpoo’s Cymbidium Park was reconstructed
The Cymbidium Park in Mungpoo was razed to the ground on 9.4.2015 by a severe Northern Wind that raised a storm. All nine, small and big poly-houses which used to shelter beautiful flowers and imported tissue cultured plant lets were destroyed. It was a Herculean task to get the park back to shape. At first, we cleared all the debris and were able to save as many plants as possible. Meanwhile, we approached GTA for funds to raise the structures once again. We requested the agency from Siliguri who had constructed these structures earlier for its reconstruction.They estimated the budget of 3.5 crores. The cost was exorbitant indeed.
There was no fund in the GTA. So, we approached our parent Department of FPI and Horticulture through GTA, but they couldn’t fit our required fund requirement in their available programmes. Fortunately, we had some fund from RKVY for Orchids and we were given permission by GTA to use 22 lakhs from it for repairing these structures. This fund was not at all sufficient for restoring 9 smaller and bigger poly-houses. We had to purchase earthen pots for 23,000 plants. The cost for transplanting 50% of cymbidium plants would have cost 10.5 lakhs. By giving up the idea of using earthen pots, we planned to buy polythene pots.
The 2 inches pipes used as posts were all broken by strong wind and we were afraid to use ordinary pipes. So, we used branded pipes at the base to make the poly-houses stronger.To cut down expenses and to repair maximum number of poly-houses, we decided to use our own manpower. We motivated and asked our Quinine Factory staff for help and they carried out the job to perfection. They erected the structures. But to put silpauline in poly-houses was a challenge for our staff, because it requires special technique to pull and secure it tightly. We requested a group of 13 workers from Kolkata to do the job for the biggest poly-house, which was ready and asked our staff to learn.
After learning the technique, our staff was able to do the work in rest of the smaller poly-houses with precision. 78% of the work was done. Despite that we lost around 9000 plants!