This monsoon, 10.26 lakh saplings will be planted across Mysuru district in a bid to expand green cover. The planting of these trees will take off on Tuesday marking World Environment Day.
The Forest Department’s Social Forestry Division has kept the saplings of various species ready for distribution among farmers, institutions and civic authorities for planting during the peak rainy season months. The saplings have been raised at nurseries of the Forest Department in Mysuru and six other taluk headquarters in the district.
6.65 lakh saplings
As many as 6.65 lakh saplings have been set aside for distribution to farmers to be planted in fields under the Krishi Aranya Protsaha Yojane, a scheme to engage farmers in increasing green cover.
Each farmer will get an incentive of ₹40,000 for three years for nurturing 400 saplings they plant on one hectare of land. Deputy Conservator of Forests (Social Forestry-Mysuru) D.N. Nagaraja Achar told The Hindu that 400 saplings can be planted in a hectare.
Farmers can cultivate more saplings but the incentive will be limited to 400 plants. The incentive for three years under the scheme has been increased from ₹45 to ₹100 per plant to encourage more farmers to be part of the scheme.
Farmers were earlier getting incentives of ₹10, ₹15 and ₹20 for three years which has been increased to ₹30, ₹30 and ₹40 for three years. “As three years are crucial for the nourishment of the plants, incentives were given only for three years. Plants can survive on their own from the fourth year on,” he said.
Mr. Achar said 40,000 saplings alone will be planted on school and college campuses. “Our target is to plant saplings in 180 hectares, covering the institutions, including hospitals and others.”
Mr Achar said 3.56 lakh saplings out of 10.26 lakh have been kept aside for planting on roadsides over a distance of 150 km besides planting of trees in 225 hectares of barren land identified in all taluks.
Neem, silver oak and teak are the main plant species raised for distribution among farmers in the district. Sandalwood saplings will also be distributed to interested farmers. Though the cost for raising one plant is ₹30 for a bigger one and ₹10 for a smaller one, the department collects a nominal cost of ₹1 and ₹3 from the farmers.
Mr. Achar said NGOs and forest motivators get an incentive of ₹1 per plant for monitoring the status of the plant planted by farmers under the scheme.