Vriksha nursery

Vriksha nursery is a second generation nursery based in Mumbai where we strive to change the face of urban gardening in India with over 25,000 gardens executed in Maharashtra/Goa/Gujarat. We have a team of dedicated professionals who will leave no stone unturned to give you gardens of the utmost quality. Vriksha nursery has been synonymous with innovation in our field be it set landscaping(over 15000 teleserials/movies/adfilms), temporary landscapes (over 2500 exhibitions and weddings),ikebana flower arrangements, urban farming, rooftop gardens,living walls etc.
contact us :9820704069 Email: shaan_lalwani@hotmail.com
or better still
Drop by at: 1 ganga apts ,
irla railway soc(2nd last bungalow lane opp papilon hotel )
mumbai 400056.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The legend of the mistletoe:the plant,the fable and its medicinal uses!!

Mistletoe is one of the most famous symbols of Christmas and also the most recognizable; it is one of the most sacred and magical plants in Christian folklore. The sprigs of this plant are extensively used in Christmas decorations and it is also believed that the plant can protect the house from lightening and fire. This is why many people also leave the sprigs all the year round. There is also a traditional belief that mistletoe is a plant of peace and that a kiss under this plant ensures undying love and friendship. The belief that no lady standing under decorated mistletoe can refuse to be kissed, is obviously a major attraction for young men. And a kiss under mistletoe is often interpreted as a proposal of marriage. Though most of these beliefs and superstitions are of pagan significance, they are still prevalent in all their glory; the legend of mistletoe being a widely celebrated one.
What is a mistletoe?
Mistletoe is especially interesting botanically because it is a partial parasite (a "hemiparasite"). As a parasitic plant, it grows on the branches or trunk of a tree and actually sends out roots that penetrate into the tree and take up nutrients. But mistletoe is also capable for growing on its own; like other plants it can produce its own food by photosynthesis. Mistletoe, however, is more commonly found growing as a parasitic plant. There are two types of mistletoe. The mistletoe that is commonly used as a Christmas decoration (Phoradendron flavescens) is native to North America and grows as a parasite on trees.
The word "mistletoe" is derived from the Anglo-Saxon words, "mistel" (dung) and "tan" (twig) -- misteltan is the Old English version of mistletoe. It's thought that the plant is named after bird droppings on a branch One of the beliefs in the early centuries was that mistletoe grew from birds. People used to believe that, rather than just passing through birds in the form of seeds, the mistletoe plant was an inherent result of birds landing in the branches of trees.
The Legend:
Mistletoe is also said to be a sexual symbol, because of the consistency and color of the berry juice as well as the belief that it is an aphrodisiac, the “soul” of the oak from which it grows the mystical power of mistletoe, and the tradition of kissing under this plant, owes its origin to the legend of Goddess Frigga and her son Balder. Frigga was the Goddess of Love and her son, Balder, was the God of the Summer Sun. Once, Balder dreamt of his death. He was obviously worried and told his mother about the strange dream. Frigga was worried not only for the life of her son but also for the life on Earth because she knew that without Balder, all life on Earth would come to an end. Thus, she did her utmost to avoid such a mishap by going everywhere and appealing to every being in air, water, fire and earth, to promise her that they would never harm her son. She was promised the safety of her son by every animal and plant under and above the Earth. However, Loki, the God of Evil, who was an enemy of Balder and always had evil designs in his mind, was aware that there was one plant that Frigga had overlooked. It grew on apple and oak trees and was known as Mistletoe. Thus, Loki made an arrow and placed a sprig of this plant at its tip. He then beguiled Hoder, the blind brother of Balder and the God of Winter, and made him shoot this arrow at Balder. Balder immediately died and everybody was worried as the Earth turned cold and life became dreary. For the next three days, every creature tried to bring Balder back to life but he was revived only by Frigga and with the help of mistletoe. Her tears on the plant became pearly white berries and she blessed it such that anyone who stands under the mistletoe would never be harmed and would be entitled to a kiss as a token of love...
The Medicinal Uses:
Available clinical evidence does not support claims of anti-cancer effect, quality of life, or other outcomes from the use of mistletoe extract.
Mistletoe leaves and young twigs are used by herbalists, and it is popular in Europe, especially in Germany, for treating circulatory and respiratory system problems. Use of mistletoe extract in the treatment of cancer originated with Rudolf Steiner, the founder of Anthroposophy. He compared the parasitic nature of the mistletoe plant to that of cancer, and believed that cancer represents a faltering of the body's spiritual defenses. Some anthroposophical mistletoe preparations are diluted homeopathically. Mistletoe extract is sold as Iscador, Helixor, and several other trade names.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Feng shui: the science of rearranging furniture to enhance your life!

OK in know this is a touchey topic ...i know loads out people out there firmly put faith in this so called science but im sorry i just dont get it...is a system of beliefs which proclaim that the forces which govern the Heavens and Earth and drive all cosmic interactions have nothing better to do than complain about furniture or building arrangements, thus u can also call it simply The ancient oriental art of knocking holes in buildings.
Over the years India has imported loads of silly things from China toxic plastic toys,bad quality phones,those really annoying Chinese lanterns we get during Diwali...but by far the stupidst import has to be Feng Shui.iv got clients who have driven me up the walls cause some feng shui expert says their garden is bringing them BAD FORTUNE! so this delusional so called expert of an imaginary science has made them spend more than 3 times their original garden estimate cause his pseudo science told him a perfectly beautiful garden is the reason their business is suffering...dude wtf! so i decided to find out a little more about this SCIENCE....

Origin: Feng Shui first came into being when a poor-quality carpenter who made poor quality furniture was forced into poverty. When he realised that no one was buying his cheap flat-pack dining tables, he was forced to begin robbing houses. Having neither brains nor brawn, he did this in broad daylight, causing some concern in the local neighborhood. His methods involved lots of insulting and shouting at the owners of the house, destroying their living and dining areas, leaving toilet seats up, taking large sums of money and facing north.
People quickly began to notice that after their houses were obliterated, all their money stolen and the often delicate treatise on toilet seat positioning being thrown into disarray, their lives improved soon after. For example, the fact that no one was obliterating, stealing or throwing into disarray any of their possessions.

Word spread quickly of the new luck people could find by giving a failed furniture maker large amounts of money and have him ruin their house. This was compounded by the main form of communication at the time; Semaphore. Over enthusiastic chatting led to the accidental demolition of many homes, which in turn led to many people being forced to turn to Feng Shui to make a living.Criminal activity quickly developed into an art, with plans being drawn up for new and interesting way to extract money of house owners via placement/burning/theft of furniture. It was at this time that some other people, far removed from people previously mentioned, found that by not destroying the furniture, some could be stolen and sold. This lasted all of four days, and the art quickly became the crime we all know and love today.


1)RED DOORS: The idea of the red door is that red (a substitute for the fire element) will always bring good luck, so it must be on the door to bring good luck in from the entrance.hahahhahahahahah.....im not big on style or interior design but absolutely any1 with basic color sense can say this travesty of a red door is just plain wrong...so if coloring your door brings you luck why the hell is it that the only time i see red doors in the city are in cheap chineez joints by the road side serving stale tripple sejwaan!
A very wise man in an interview once said" love is the color of love and danger" this wise man was a dear friend of mine,if only he had said red is the color of luck and doors!sigh!

2)UGLY ARTIFACTS:frogs, Chinese folklore heroes, dragons,laughing fat Buddhas....all made of plaster of Paris coated with lead paints these ghastly so called artifacts are littered all over these feng shui stores all over town...imported by the bulk ...i just cant believe people buy these. A Chinese warrior statute mas produced in a small warehouse by kids wont scare away ghosts...frogs kissing wont get you love...sheesh i wonder how we let superstitions get the better of us..these SHOWPIECES are neither decorative nor a good gift...

3)WIND CHIMES:are chimes constructed from suspended tubes, rods, bells or other objects and are often made of metal or wood. Wind chimes are usually hung outside of a building or residence, as a visual and aural garden ornament, and are to be played by the wind. It is said that these bells were originally intended to frighten away any lurking evil spirits going by what feng shui says ghosts in china must be freegin cowards! who de hell can get scared of ting a ling ting ting sounds! if you find that sound melodious or sweet or any thing like that pls get your ears tested ....
4)WATER FEATURES IN FRONT OF THE DOORS:Water can be very powerful to create more financial success in a building.In india the government provides us with several water features in front our our buildings...pothole puddles,man holes,open drains...where the hell is our financial success...if this water feature thingi worked people living in slums along the gutter would be millionaires...and the funny thing is the water features are rarely decorative...they always have to be ugly...gold..with a crystal ball waterfall!
5)LUCKY BAMBOOS..YES YES..BONSAI...NO NOOO!! :Lucky Bamboo is one of the most popular feng shui cures. In traditional feng shui, the lucky bamboo is used to attract health, happiness, love and abundance.1st of all that plant is not a bamboo this poor confused drachenas are kept soilless nutirentless,in chemical jellies and this is suppose to bring you happiness...Bonsai's on the other hand is discouraged cause it apparently stunts the development and well being of the area...i have 3500 bonsais and trust me nothing has stunted hurt or minutely affected the happiness/growth levels in the nursery.

Ok i know my views are a little biased...feel free to drop me your opinion...honestly id love to know what you guys think about this so called science!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Monday Morning Madness!!!!

its 5.30 on a Monday...and while half de world is snoozing their alarms we at Vriksha are up and on the run...Iv never really mentioned this on my blog but my mom is an Ikebana flower arrangement expert ...and she has been creating floral arrangements for over 2 decades....there are 12 offices she goes to every Monday...though im daft at ikebana iv been driving her to the market for about 7 years.

By the time i get there its 6.15 but the market is goin crazy...flowers from all over the world packed in cardboard boxes have arrived.gopi(one of the vendors)has unloaded these beautiful trailing pink heleconias he calls them let me quote"SAKXY PINK" the vasai based grower has become quite the legend in the market with his varieties.
We head down the market lane and its packed...u think ur trains are crowded try the Dardar market.... madame yeh le lo....madam yeh le lo...each street vendor is pitching mom their flowers but maa knows exactly what she wants ...her bargaining skills are legendary i just stand back n let her inner gujju take over...
the right side there are these ladies they have raided a late night wedding ...in baskets they display their broken short stemmed flowers...
and in a market where flowers are neatly packed according to size color shape etc these women have displayed their beautiful mess...its a riot of color they don't know the name of the flowers or the market value 100 rs ka sab(100 rs for all)...and though its a steal the flowers are too damaged to last a week.but their noise is amusing to all the little girl sitting by her mother sips on hot chai midst the madness.
there's a little tradition that has started from the time im back from the UK ...
sitting on an idle afternoon in Sheffield id told my adorable girlfriend that every Monday ill get you flowers...she laughed it of back then... and in the 3 years that we have been back iv not missed a monday...nor has she not had a huge smile on every Monday evening when i hand over the flowers.
The markets got so much variety...the colors,shapes,forms of flowers ....and though they look stunning iv always had this moral dilemma is it right to cut these long stemmed beauties in the prime box them up clean them arrange them to end up at such contrasting places.
Flower industry is a multi billion dollar industry ...Cut flowers are often grown outside of the india in countries where environmental regulations just aren't as strict. chemicals such as DDT, which are now outlawed in most countries, are still frequently used. When DDT inevitably finds its way into the environment, generally through the water, it has a hugely detrimental effect on birds and animals.As i think about this i wonder if these bengali babus who have come to the city to sell these flowers know what their flowers are dong to the world.
passing under the bridge through the garland sellers area there are 3 cops making what can only assume a garland for an elephant(sheesh! they made me delete the pic)...it was for some visiting political leader. the vendor was pissed as hell...either he supported another party or he knew he wasn't gona get paid a dime...!
the marigold or as they locally call it gonda are in big demand today the shop always has nun's,poojaries here buying these flowers by the kilo...the marathi mama that stands by the counter is grumpier than usual and for some strange reason is moaning about the falling rupee...the bees are here in full attendance and i chuckle at the thought of saritas reaction if she was around.
with a boot full of flowers its time to head 7.30 moms getting late...and she isnt amused by me walking around with my camera and clicking random images ...the market is a place full of extremities beautiful boxes of flowers by a dustbin ,rich ladies haggling for pennies with poor dhoti clad vendors,kids sipping chai and students walking past them with their fancy 100 buck coffees.The market creates a royal mess and any1 traveling towards town would stand witness to this...the bmc is more interested in taking flowers for free rather than keeping the market clean.but in this mess i have my Monday moment of madness...and as i look at the various facebook status of how people hate Mondays i know iv made the right moves in life.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The death of the real Christmas tree!!!

It's the most wonderful time of the year
With the kids jingle belling
And everyone telling you "Be of good cheer"
It's the most wonderful time of the year
It's the hap-happiest season of all
With those holiday greetings and gay happy meetings
When friends come to call
It's the hap- happiest season of all

....the poinsettias are in bloom,so are the phittunias...its the season where plant sales hit the roof and as a nurseryman i stand witness to the madness.While there is no crystal clear answer to the age-old “real versus fake” Christmas tree debate .iv witnessed first hand the diminishing christmas tree sales ...back in my dads time december was a day where almost 8-12 trees were sold each day but today its hard to even sell 2.

Artificial trees do offer a long-term solution for your Christmas tree decorating needs. And I have to admit, the latest generation of “fake” trees don’t look that fake. They’ve come a long way from the first artificial trees that were actually manufactured by a toilet brush company. That’s right, the first artificial tree was pretty much a really tall, green, toilet brush. But today, until you get close, you’d be hard pressed to distinguish the artificial trees from the real thing… except of course for the missing fresh pine smell.Fake trees are made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC)which is a petroleum-derived plastic. Producing this type of plastic creates a lot of pollution, and PVC is difficult to recycle.the manufacturers use lead and other additives that have been linked to liver, kidney, neurological, and reproductive system damage in lab studies on animals. Economically, artificial trees can also be easier on your wallet. For the cost of a single large live tree, you can purchase an artificial tree that looks the same but will last for several holiday seasons.

Cons of Fake Christmas Trees

-Incredibly hard to clean. Dust accumulates on trees and is virtually impossible to clean.

-There are large amounts of energy used to produce a plastic Christmas tree.

-There's no way to recycle a Christmas tree, just to pass the tree down to someone else who may need or want it.
An artificial tree may be used for 5, 10, or 15 years… but eventually it will be disposed of it in favor of something new. Unfortunately artificial trees are not biodegradable and cannot be recycled, so their disposal has a significant impact to the environment. If disposed in a landfill, artificial trees will never breakdown but rather permanently remain in landfills

Pros of Fake Christmas Trees

-Cost effective. Buy it once, you could possibly never have to buy another one.

-Flame retardant. Fake Christmas trees are far more resistant to fire.

-Easy to put back up every year.

The Benefits and Care of Live Christmas Trees:
the most eco-friendly way to enjoy a Christmas tree is to buy a live tree with its roots intact from a local grower, and then replant it in your yard once the holiday has passed. Cons of Potted Christmas Trees They're very big and heavy. You will most likely need a dolly and a couple of people to haul in a potted Christmas tree.You need to take care of the roots and water your Christmas tree to ensure it will live after being in your home.Potted Christmas trees shouldn't stay in the home for a long time...only 1-2 weeks.Finding a home in your yard for your potted Christmas tree after use can be tedious.but called me old fashioned i kinda prefer the good old Araucaria sp. Some how i know Santa would rather be keeping gifts under a live tree n not an oversized plastic bottle brush.

The Vriksha Way:
here at the nursery we know how hard it is for you to buy big plants in our space,time restricted city ...here at the nursery we have started hiring the trees out for the season and come the 10th of jan when its time to take down the decorations we take back the tree and give you back the deposit that we draw for the plants.its an easy,cheap and eco friendly way to have your very own Real Christmas tree resting in your drawing room!

Friday, December 2, 2011

A green Way to Recycle the Water That Your A/C Unit Produces

Condensation produced from your air conditioning can amount to big water savings over time.

I can use the excess water that my air conditioner produces?

This may seem like somewhat of a revelation, but the answer is yes, you most certainly can (although I wouldn’t recommend using it for human or pet consumption). Many of us don’t even realize that this source of liquid even exists because, quite honestly, very few of us willingly spend time outside in the dead of summer scrutinizing the mechanics of our respective units.

For those who happily hole themselves up inside their air-conditioned refuges, here’s how excess moisture magically materializes. Once the internal air in our homes is sufficiently cooled, an evaporator coil draws extracted water vapor down through a drain, which in effect means sayonara, free liquid. Now, to the average individual, this excess moisture may seem almost negligible, but for those who live in perpetually drought-stricken regions, we’re talking about a potential oasis in the desert.

the Burj Khalifa, which at 2,717 feet tall is quite easily the tallest skyscraper in the
world, utilizes the moisture generated from its comprehensive air-conditioning system to irrigate the surrounding and quite sprawling Burj Khalifa Park. On an annual basis, this “condensate recovery” program recycles 15 million gallons of water that would otherwise have
been wasted.
Have you had a change of heart now? All of those drops eventually really do add up, which can take the heat off of your wallet if you live in a municipality that charges for water privilege. it’s a really cool way to creatively tap into a resource that typically flies under the radar.

Bird baths,lilly ponds, water walls&waterfalls are all garden accessories widely used by all garden designers ....the excesses form your air condition could be used to
reduce the water consumption in these features.Green walls which is one of the fastest spreading garden ideas could be watered by this grey water by means of simple plumbing.
You don't need to tie yourself to trees or dress in vegetables to save our planet...do your little bit for mother earth ul not just save her...ul also save time,money and effort.

Air conditioner condensate may contain contaminants, such as algae. While most household graywater is alkaline, air conditioner condensate is neutral. It should not be used for applications where the pH balance of the water is vital, such as aquariums. Air conditioning condensate is not safe for consumption without special filtering and treatment.
So will gray water solve the global water crisis? Not by itself. But as awareness of its benefits grows, gray water could take a chunk out of the amount of fresh water people use. After all, watering plants constitutes 5 percent of the 400 gallons the average Indian household uses per day. If everyone in India used only gray water for their plants, it could save 6.6 billion gallons of water every day. Even better than that, when you reuse water, you save electricity, since it takes power to pump water to your house. This electricity is often generated at coal-fire power plants, so reusing water can actually help clear the air, too.