Today we are going to talk about the National tree of India. The national tree of India is the Indian fig tree. The fig tree is also known as Banyan tree and Ficus bengalensis. The branches of this tree give themselves roots like new trees in a wide area. The fig tree is one of the symbols of pride of India and is integral to the identity of the nation. So let us gather some more information about the National tree of India.
The fig tree is considered sacred in Hindu philosophy. The roots of the fig tree then give birth to more trunks and branches. This tree is considered immortal because of its characteristic and its lifespan and the fig tree is an integral part of Indian legends. The fig tree is always a symbol of the vague ‘Kalpa Vriksha’ or ‘Tree of Wish Fulfillment’ as this tree is associated with longevity and has important medicinal properties.
The Banyan tree has been a focal point for rural communities in India for centuries. Even today that tree is the center of village life and the village council meets under the shade of this tree. The Banyan tree being a native of India enhances the privileged status of the tree as a national symbol.
In Hinduism, the fig tree is considered sacred and is called "Ashwath Vriksha". This tree represents eternal life as the banyan tree has almost always expanding branches. This tree is part of the Indonesian coat of arms. And which is meant to symbolize the unity of Indonesia. The old banyan tree later spread out covering a large area using this prop root.
The banyan tree is characterized by their aerial prop roots that grow in thick wooden trunks and which may become indivisible with age and from the main trunk. This tree is also called kalpavriksha which means ‘wish fulfilling divine tree’.
Brian Aldiss describes the future earth in his novel Hothouse where the only giant banyan tree covers half of the world. And this is due to the fact that individual trees discover the ability to connect together and leave adventurous roots as well. The largest banyan tree is now found in Kolkata, India. A famous fig tree was planted in Lahaina’s Courthouse Square in Hawaii in 1873 and now covers about two-thirds of an acre.
Information about Etymology of banyan tree
One of the names of this tree was originally given to F. benghalensis and this tree came from India and where early travelers saw that the shade of banyan tree was frequently cast by Banyans.
Information about In horticulture of Fig Tree
Due to the complex structure and extended branch of the fig tree root, it is used as a subject specimen in bonsai and penjing. The oldest living bonsai in Taiwan is the 240-year-old fig tree housed in Tainan.
Information about In Characteristics of This Tree
Like other species of this tree, banyans bear their fruit in the form of a composition called "syconium". The syconium of the genus Ficus provides shelter and food for the wasps of this tree and the banyan tree for pollination depends on the wasps of the figs.
The fruit-bearing birds of this tree scatter the seeds of banyans. The seeds of the banyan tree are small and because most banyans grow in the woodlands and a seed that germinates on the ground and is unlikely to survive.
Many seeds of this tree fall on branches and stems of other trees or human houses and when it is seen to germinate the banyan tree grows roots down towards the ground and as a result can bring the host tree or part of the building into the envelope. For this reason the banyan's colloquial name is "strangler fig". Many tropical banyan tree species that compete for sunlight have a sore throat.
The leaves of this tree are leathery, large, glossy, green and elliptical. Like most fruits of this tree, its leaf bud is covered with two large scales. As the leaves of the banyan tree develop, the scales are formed illegally. The small leaves of the banyan tree have an attractive reddish color.
The old banyan tree is characterized by aerial prop roots and matures into thick, woody trunks. The banyan tree can be inseparable from the primary trunk with certain ages. The banyan tree expands to cover most of the area.
In some species of banyan tree, prop roots grow over a significant area that resembles a banyan tree grove. Each trunk of a banyan tree is directly or indirectly attached to the primary trunk. The topology of this huge root system of the banyan tree inspired the name of the hierarchical computer network operating system "Banyan VINES".
In culture of Banyan Tree
In Hinduism, the leaf of this tree is said to be a resting place for Lord Krishna. In the ShreeMad Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna said, "Here is a fig tree whose roots are upwards and its branches are below and the Vedic hymns are its leaves. He who knows the banyan tree is the knower of suffering.
The tree is mentioned numerous times in the Pali canon of Buddhism. They hint that the garden of a banyan tree is comparable to a ship's tree in comparison to how the desire for work subdues men. The Chamorro people in Guam taotaomona are the spirits of the ancient Chamorro who act as protectors of this tree.
Information about Notable specimens
Thimmamma Marrimanu is a large fig tree in Anantapur, 35 km from the city of Kadiri in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. This fig tree is present in Indian botanical gardens and is more than 550 years old.
Another such banyan tree in India, the Dodda Alada Mara, is found in the seam of Bangalore, India, with an area of about 2.5 acres.
In the 1880s, Iolani Palace and Queen Kapiolani planted two fig trees in the grounds of Iolani Palace in Honolulu, Hawaii, USA. The banyan tree has since grown into a vast cluster of trees on the grounds of the old historic palace.
There is a big fig tree inside the precincts of Jagannath temple in Puri, India. This fig tree is considered sacred by the devotees and it is believed to be more than 500 years old.