The medicinal effects of plants is believed to diffuse in their environment as well. Like we all know that by staying under the shed of Tamarind Tree a person may become sick while staying under the shed of Neem Tree a person can stay healthy. Likewise, Sanatoriums for TB patients are established near pine forests, Lord Buddha attained enlightenment under the Peepal tree and the shed of Myrobalan tree is believed to cause Diarrhea. These are all Indian facts that clearly proves that plants in our surroundings do affect us. Therefore, we should avoid to stay in surroundings of plants and trees that have an adverse affect on our health and should plant more of such trees that are useful for us from medicinal point of view.
The enhancement in health benefits by being in contact with medicinal plants and if necessary, easily obtaining the fresh medicines from the Ayurvedic plants are the objectives behind establishing the “Dhanvantari Vatika” in Raj Bhavan.
This medicinal garden was established in Raj Bhavan on 24 February, 2001 by the then Governor of Uttar Pradesh, Shri Vishnukant Shastri. At that time the Governor himself planted some Ayurvedic medicinal plants in the Vatika. This garden was named as Dhanvantari Vatika after Lord Dhanvantari, considered to be the deity of good health and Ayurveda. It is the first Ayurvedic Medicinal Plants’ garden in the state and also regarded as the Model Pharmaceutical Garden in Uttar Pradesh.
The main objective of establishing this medicinal garden was to propagate the knowledge of medicinal plants among the masses. This is possible only when such types of gardens are established in different parts of the state and the awareness regarding the importance of these medicinal plants is spread among people, so that they can benefit by the valuable heritage of our ancestors in the form of Ayurveda.
This garden now has more than 200 plant species that includes plants like Rudraksh, Kalp Vriksha, Sinduri, Krishnvat, Sita Ashok, Harad, Bhallatak, Kupeelu, Vijaysaar, Kutaj, Chandan (white and red) Lata Palash, Shyonaak, Gambhaari, Harjod, Gudmaar, Varahikand, Kachoor, Shakhotak, Varun, Putrajeev, Vajradanti, Mishwak, Sarpgandha, Paribhadra, Paras Peepal, Khadir, Guggalu and many more rare medicinal plants. Along with this, other plants present in this Vatika are Baheda, Amla, Shikakai, Mahanimb, Nirguni, Maulshri, Vasa, Vidhara, Kaalmegh, Antmool, Gunja, Nariyal, Supari, Giloy, Ghritkumari, Shatavari, Ashwagandha, Tulsi and Haldi.
A total of 16 leaflets of “Ayurveda aur Hamara Swasthya”, “Aushadhi Paudhe aur Swasthya” and “Shatayu ki Or” have been published by Dhanvantari Vatika till now in which measures to stay healthy by adopting Ayurveda have been described. These leaflets also provide information regarding causes, prevention and cure of health problems like diabetes mellitus, arthritis, piles, jaundice, hyper acidity, mental health, digestive insufficiency, indigestion and constipation and obesity. Information about Ayurvedic medicinal plants useful for treating these diseases is also described in these leaflets. The 17th edition of “Shatayu Ki Or” was published in form of a book with focus on child health and Ayurveda.
An exhibition of Ayurvedic plants and herbs grown in Dhanvantari Vatika is also organized in the Annual Regional Vegetables and Flower Show held in Raj Bhavan. Moreover, as per the desire of the Governor, Dhanvantari Vatika is opened for visitors in the month of February for approximately 10 to 15 days.