IIT Mandi is committed towards building a Green Campus. Based on the Eco-management plan the Green Panel of the institute recognized that establishing a Botanical Garden would help in achieving the commitment. The Botanical Garden was started in July 2015 with complete support from IIT Mandi with the following main objectives
- Study of flora of Kamand region
- Establish a Botanical Garden with collection of local flora
- Develop and maintain Herbarium
- In-situ conservation, collection and maintenance of medicinal plants
- Documentation, digitization and dissemination of the related information
- Undertake R&D in the related area (Phytochemical profiling of selected plants, understanding the local edible plants, Bioengineering plants etc)
Achievements and activities:
- The team managed to add and maintain about 166 plant species with multiple copies (at least 3 plants) of each.
- All the plants of Botanical Garden are scientifically labelled using QR code based ID cards. Experimental plots of tulips, saffron and roses (65 species), hibiscus (cuttings), Canna were established Several trees of the campus are QR coded
- The phytochemical profiling of 3 Tulsi varieties, Catharanthus roseus, Rhododendron sp. and about 20 Essential oils using GC-MS and NMR have been completed.
- We successfully managed to grow Kangra Tea plants in the Botanical Garden. These survived for 2 years
- Successfully developed about 10 herbal infusions. We optimized vacuum drying technology.
- Established IIT Mandi-Industry-EWOK-Farmer Network
- Currently working with Industries (Thapasu foods – IIT Mandi Catalyst startup, Himalayan Drug Company- Bangalore) towards empowering local farmers via EWOK network
- Trained women from EWOK – Tea Packaging
- Organised Botanical Garden tours of several local (about 7) schools, Girls students of VigyanJyoti conference held at IIT Mandi, MIT Boot camp students
- Delivered Talk on Flora and Fauna to ISTP students
- Plantation Drives - 5WIP and NSS
- 5WIP project work assistance (Pebble design)
- Participated in Design and Innovation Hackathon (3rd Prize for the RhodoSauce and infusion)
- Workshop for Northeast STEP students – Botanical Garden visit and DNA from plants
- We are supported by IIT Mandi in terms of funding for the Garden, manpower, laboratory etc
- The lab successfully supported WOS-B project application to DST (about 30 lakhs). The project is awarded to Dr. Reshma Sao under the mentorship of Dr Shyam K Masakapalli. The title of the project is "Development and Dissemination of Agri-based technologies being optimised at IIT Mandi: From Lab to Farmers field at mid-Himalayan region". The Agri-technologies that are being developed in the Medicinal Plant Lab assists this project.
The logo of IIT Mandi Botanical Garden symolizes the leaves of a tree Terminalia chebula
commonly called as Harad. This was photographed at Botanical Garden in 2016. The logo depicts greenery and the usefulness of plants. Harad has great medicinal value and hence is a major ingredient of Triphla churn, used for centuries in India to cure certain ailments.