Lal Bagh Botanical Garden
Lalbagh is one of the oldest botanical gardens in India and is also a major tourist attraction in South India. Located in South Bengaluru, the Lalbagh Botanical Garden is not only one of the largest botanical gardens in India, but also the first of its kind, with planned routes, glasshouses and ornamental flowers growing throughout the property. The garden itself is spread over an area of 240 acres and its construction was commissioned by the famous ruler Hyder Ali. It was finally completed by his son- Tipu Sultan- who designed the gardens keeping in mind the beautiful gardens of Sira in Tumkur District in Karnataka.Lalbagh is home to exotic flowers that were imported by the Sultan from countries like France, Persia, Arabia, Afghanistan, etc. Therefore, flowers that were previously never seen in India were first witnessed in this historical garden. Trees that were imported by Tipu Sultan from all over the world can still be found growing here. Apart from the exotic trees, visitors can also catch sight of some rare birds such as the Myna, pond heron, purple moorhen, parakeets, Brahminy kites, the common egret and much more. Apart from the stunning flora and fauna of the Lalbagh Botanical Garden, it has another striking attraction, which is the Lalbagh rock. This rock, which is said to be over 3000 years old, is one of the oldest rocks in the world and can be found in the center of the garden.History of Lalbagh Botanical Garden Lalbagh is not only one of the most well-developed botanical gardens in India with a wealth of exotic flora and fauna, but also a historically significant place. Hyder Ali who was the ruler of Mysore between 1761-1782, commissioned the construction of the garden. In fact, he was known for the many gardens whose foundations he laid and architecture he ordained during his reign as emperor. The development of the Lalbagh Botanical Garden was then taken over by his son Tipu Sultan who added to the beauty of the garden by importing trees and plants of his own from faraway countries.The layout of the garden was based on the sprawling Mughal gardens that were being constructed throughout the Mughal Empire, especially the one at Sira- an important Mughal outpost in South India and a little distance away from Bangalore city. After its completion in the 18th century, Lalbagh also received India’s first lawn-clock and was home to the largest collection of exotic plants in the Indian subcontinent. By 1860, Lalbagh also had animals like orangutans, peacocks, rhinos, deer and emus. The foundation for the now-famous glasshouse was laid by Prince Albert Victor in 1889, where the structure was modeled on the Crystal Palace in London. Today, Lalbagh is home to some of the most exotic plant and bird species and is also the resting place of the Lalbagh Rock, one of the oldest rocks on the planet.Flower show at Lalbagh Botanical Garden The bi-annual flower show at the Lalbagh Botanical Garden is a spectacle to behold. People travel from far and wide from India and even from abroad to witness millions of flowers, thousands of plants and the incredible artistry that goes into making the figurines and flower structures.The show takes place twice a year- once during January in the same week as the Indian Republic Day, and another time in August, during Independence Day. Each year, a different theme is chosen and flower arrangements are made according to the theme. Plants and flowers are imported from all over the world and over 20 lakh flowers are used each year to make semi-permanent structures in various characteristic shapes and designs. The show takes place inside the striking Glass House which is located on the premises of the Botanical Gardens and goes on from 9:00 am in the morning until 6:00 pm in the evening. Even though the best time to witness the show is in the morning when you can see all the flowers in full bloom and in all their vibrant colours, night time is a whole different experience. The whole Glass House lights up in a golden glow which makes the structures look even more magical and ethereal.