Baldha Garden: A Museum of Indigenous and Exotic Plants
Baldha Garden is considered one of the oxygen centers in Dhaka city. Its natural beauty attracts naturalists as well as tourists. In a city like Dhaka, it plays an important role to reduce the pollution and keep balance in the environment. If you want to be in the nature but don’t have much time to go outside Dhaka then it is perhaps the best location for you.
History of Baldha Garden:
The Baldha Garden was established by landlord Narendra Narayan Roy Chaudhury. He began making this garden in 1909 and until his death in 1943 he continued to expand the garden. It took more than thirty years to give this private property a complete shape. The owner arranged musical performances (i.e. Jalsas) here. After his death, his descendant used to take care of this garden. However, due to lack of maintenance, its condition began to get worse. In order to protect this, his grandson gave the responsibility of maintenance and improving the garden to the Forest Department in 1962. Since then it is maintained under the Department of Forestry as a satellite unit of the National Botanical Garden.
The Baldha Garden attracts people for its scenic beauty and green atmosphere. Here one can find an enormous collection of indigenous and exotic plants brought from various countries of the world. The whole garden has been divided into two sections- Cybele and Psyche.
In the Psyche section, there are many things to look at. The lily pond is perhaps the most attractive thing here. This pond is covered with our national flower lily and various types of hydrophytic plants. While roaming in this area, one may come across a house which is made only for Aloe plants. The unique type of plants such as, climbing Ivy and Cyperus Papyrus, which is also known as Egyptian paper plant, add up to the beauty of the garden. There is a lotus tank where one people can find Amazon lotus and blue nympheas. Other trees are cactus, orchid, and various type of flower trees such as, bakul flower (Mimusops elengi).
The main attractions of the Cybele section are the famous Sankhanidhi pond, sundial, asoca flower (Saraca asoca), African tulip, camellia, Joy house and Fern house. One can spend a quality time sitting on the staircase of the ghat of Sankhanidhi pond. Not only the ghat but also the entire bank of the pond is concreted and the stairs have gone down almost at the deep of the pond. As a part of the beautification of the ghat, tree tubs are placed in the middle of the staircase. Decorative work of the mosaic in ghat will make people go astonished. If you want to take a look of the pond, please visit the below link-
Many famous personalities from different parts of the world came to Bangladesh to visit this botanical garden. The world poet Rabindranath Tagore was one of them. When he came to Dhaka for the last time in 1926, he visited Baldha Garden and other historical and tourist spots in Dhaka. He even stayed one night in Joy house. The poet was so much attracted by the beauty of the camellia flower that he even wrote a famous poem “Camellia” (??????????) after going back to Kolkata.
Museum of plants and flowers:
Baldha Garden is undoubtedly a beautiful place for jogging. It is one of the few places in Dhaka city where people can get fresh air and oxygen which let them live long in this polluted metropolitan. This botanical garden is 3.15 acres in size. This one of the oldest botanical gardens in Bangladesh is the house of about 15000 plants of 672 species of around 335 classes belonging to 87 families. If anyone wants to see rare species of plants and keep in touch with nature then he or she can take a short visit there. Tourists can enjoy the beauty of the nature and tranquillity of this wonderful place. Because of its rich collections of plants and various types of flowers, it is considered museum of plants and flowers.
Location and nearest tourist spots:
No doubt, readers will pay heed to visit this place. It is situated at Wari in old Dhaka. As it is very close to Tikatuli area and Saidabad bus terminal, one can go there by bus. Bus service is available from different parts of the city. If you want comfortable journey then you can take a taxi or CNG. If you get down in Tikatuli then you can go to the destination by foot or rickshaw. It remains open from 9-12 am and 3-5 pm. To enter into this property, you have to collect a ticket which costs Tk. 5 only.
If travellers go there early in the morning then they can visit the nearest tourist spots- Bahadur Shah Victoria Park, Ahasan Manjil, Rose Garden Palace and University of Dhaka, as well. Rich historical value and beautiful architectural design of these places will surely mesmerize the visitors.
The Cybele section of the Baldha Botanical Garden has been open for common visitors. Taking this advantage, they indulge in indecent behaviour which put pedestrian and visitors in uncomfortable situation. Because of the shameless activities of the lovers, this garden turns into dating spot. They are the responsible for spoiling the environment of the garden. There is also a danger of facing the hijacker or other nuisance. That is why, I will suggest the visitor and tourists to visit the place in a group.