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Asia’s only surviving Redwood tree preserved in CSIR Tangmarg
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Asia’s only surviving Redwood tree preserved in CSIR Tangmarg

Post by Syeda Rafiyah on Friday, February 24, 2023

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The Council of Science and Industrial Research (CSIR) Yarikha Field Station in Tangmarg, north Kashmir, is home to Asia's lone Redwood Tree, 'Sequoiadendrongiganteum,' which is roughly 150 years old. 
Students and researcher teams from various universities, colleges, and officials from various departments have visited the site for many years to investigate the peculiarities and age of the tree. During the peak summer season, several schoolchildren visit CSIR for environmental tours.
According to sources, there is no such tree in South Asia. I also conducted research with the assistance of my fellows and seniors. In Asian countries, this tree does not exist. "This is the only preserved tree here," stated Qazi Parveiz, Incharge Scientist at the Yarikha Field Station. 
"We invited the former Director General of the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research two years ago, and the tree was declared as heritage tree. "I learned from my investigations that it is around 150 years old," Parveiz remarked.“We are doing the proper preservation of the tree. We are also working for its propagation and we are looking into it from a research point of view. It is our responsibility to save it,” he said.
However, he claimed that the situation was mysterious and that no one knew who had planted the tree or where the sample had originated from.
According to Parveiz the tree is mostly found in some forest patches of California and North America.
"The International Union of Conservation has declared the tree endangered in these countries since the population of the tree is very less there,” Parveiz said.
Yarikha has become a place of attraction for researchers and students of universities and colleges as the CSIR Field Station farm is located in the lush green forests.
“Tourists and researchers come here. Earlier, visitors were allowed  however now we have shut its close vicinity for the visitors  to save it from any harm.," he said
He said that the giant tree has a  shape of a huge Morchella Mushroom and remains evergreen round the year adding that the tree is 100 to 150 feet tall.
“It draws the attention of the people due to its giant size and looks. Interestingly, there are not bird nests over the tree it remains a mystery,” he said.
“We are lucky to have this tree in Kashmir and we are very happy that it is in our farm. If we do its further conservation and propagation then we can also grow it in our forests and that would be good for our environment and ecology,” Parveiz said.
The scientist said they have taken samples of this tree and do propagation of two kinds that is vegetation from its branches and also looking by its tissue culture.
“It is notable that the rare tree produces coons and seeds and we are also trying to know more about it,” said Parveiz, who has gone through a lot of literature about it.
The Field Station Yarikha, which is a huge repository of different plant and tree species, is located at a distance of 45 km from Srinagar on the way to famous tourist destination Gulmarg.

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