Asia’s largest tulip garden thrown open to tourists

Srinagar: Asia’s largest tulip garden on the banks of Dal Lake here was thrown open to visitors on Tuesday about two weeks ahead of schedule as the Valley experienced warmer days leading to earlier blooming of the flowers.
The garden was thrown open for the public today ahead of schedule as the weather this year advanced the bloom of the tulip bulbs, Director Floriculture Talat Pervez told PTI.
Pervez said the garden was opened two weeks earlier as warm days during the last few weeks had led to early blooming of the tulip bulbs.
“This year, we already have 30 per cent bloom as of now and about 20 per cent bloom is achieved every day. We will have a full bloom in the garden within a week which is earlier than usual,” he said.
The director said the department has imported 4.20 lakh fresh bulbs, including 20 new varieties, this year for the 15-hectare garden.
“We also have 5.80 lakh old bulbs, so the total number of bulbs is around 10 lakh,” he said. The garden, in the foothills of Zabarwan Range, has a total of 1.5 million tulips and its opening marks the beginning of new tourism season in Kashmir Valley.
Formerly known as Siraj Bagh, the Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden was opened in 2008 by the then Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad.