First popularised by Amitabh Bachchan-starrer Bollywood movie Silsila in 1981, the short-lived tulip gardens are being multiplied on larger scale in other districts of the Union Territory (U.T.), in the wake of success of the Srinagar tulip garden that draws tourists and locals in droves every spring season.
Sanasar, a cup-shaped green meadow encircled by tall cedars, in Ramban district in the Jammu province started a four-kanal (0.5 acre) tulip garden in 2017-18 with 28,000 to 30,000 tulip bulbs. Tulips have been grown in terraced beds for a better visual appeal.
“This year, the area earmarked for the tulip garden at Sanasar has been expanded to 35-40 kanals (five acres) with 2.7 lakh tulip bulbs of more than 20 varieties,” officials said.
With blooming to stay till April, the divisional commissioner’s office in Jammu is wooing tourists.
Mussarat Zia, Deputy Commissioner, Ramban, described the Sanasar tulip garden as “Srinagar’s kid tulip cousin”.
“Now expanded to 40 kanals, it will spread its colourful fragrance in the last week of March,” Mr. Zia said in a tweet.
In Udhampur district, locals are queuing up to witness the spectacle of tulip blooming, planted in hundreds of rows.
The Floriculture Department has planted 12,000 bulbs of five different varieties at the Highland Park, Kud, Udhampur.
The garden is also under an expansion plan in the future.
Buoyed by growing footfall of tourists at the Srinagar tulip garden that is spread over 30 hectares, tulip flowers, one of the first few flowers to bloom after a protracted winters in Kashmir, are becoming signatory flowers to the Valley gardens, though the blooming remains only three to five weeks, depending on the temperature.
Hundreds of tourists visit the Srinagar garden to relive the scenes from the movie Silsila, with long rows of over 15 lakh multicolour tulips of around 70 varieties.
It was the famous song, Dekha ek Khwab from the movie, shot at the Keukenhof tulip gardens in the Netherlands, that still captures the imagination of visitors to the Valley.