So, who is going green?

We live, we learn. Each day teaches us something new. Its like life is a gigantic jigsaw puzzle and each day that we live, we learn to fit one little piece in place.  We understand it all, one piece at a time.

 Of late, this little piece has fit into my puzzle. Irrespective of how many theories people propose about social  change, the one thing that is of real consequence, one that really matters, is intent – pure and simple. That is what is fundamental  to change. If you have the intent and your heart is in the right place, all other things follow.

It is with the right intent and a good heart that these young boys and girls are working at  a  project that yields results very slowly, but has benefits that are long term and impact large populations.  What do they do? They rescue trees. Ever  heard of something like that?  I hadn’t till I got to know of them.

While everyone is talking about the deteriorating  condition of the planet and painting a depressing and scary picture of the future for all,  these young people are actually out there doing something to  improve the situation. And they are doing it with very little money,  no corporate backing, no political support,  but a clear intent and a  strong will.

The mother found this group- they call themselves The Green Umbrella- quite by accident. She had been wanting to plant banyan trees for long time and her search ended with The Green Umbrella . The organisation’s  mandate is to rescue indigenous plants varieties  such as peepal and bargad or vat that expel large quantities of oxygen and support biodiversity offering food, shelter other creatures. They  identify  plants  that need rescuing, such as those that grow on roof tops of  dilapidated old buildings and neglected road corners , carefully extract them , re-pot them and tend to them till such time that an appropriate and permanent space can be found to plant them- not an easy time in a city like Mumbai! They also try to get hold of species that are fast becoming extinct and propagate them. Besides rescue operations, they  undertake horticulture and gardening assignments and procure for you rare species of medicinal and spiritual plants, if you promise to take good care of them.

The mother has brought home a rare type of banyan. Called the Krishne vat, the striking feature of this plant is that the edges of  its  leaves fold inward gently. Legend has it, that Lord Krishna  used to eat butter out of these leaves. The Green Umbrella found this rare plant at the Byculla Zoo and made 4 cuttings.  Unfortunately 3 didnt survive. The one that did, is being cared for by the mother now.

The Green Umbrella  operates in and around Mumbai.  Working on a  shoe-string  budget, and incurring most expense out of their pocket, this group of 6 youngsters hold jobs, but their heart really is in plant recuse and revival. A worthy cause to support, if you feel for  plants and worry about the fast pace at with which indigenous  species are disappearing.  If you want to know more about Green Umbrella’s  work or support the organisation in any way, you can write to Vikram Yende at I am sure any support extended will be greatly appreciated by the team.

One thought on “So, who is going green?

  1. Very worthy cause! Where will your mom plant that tree? Doesnt it grow to be huge?
    Its really small right now- so its in a pot, in the balcony. Will take a while before it grows into a tree. Will have to find a suitable place for it before that happens!

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