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VRIKSHA AYURVEDA – THE NEGLECTED SCIENCE
Once upon a time, from the vedic time upto the medieval period, along with Ayurveda, its sister branches were also on flourish. For example: Mrga/Asha Chikitsa by shalihotra (4th BC), Ashwa chikitsa by Nakula, Gajayurveda by Ramapada etc. in the same time, vrkshayurveda was also in main stream.
The references of Vrkshayurveda, the life science of plants are available in different classics. Among them, Vrkshayurveda by Sharangadhara, Brhat samhita, Mahabharata (Shanti Parva), Agni Purana, Arthashastra, Amara Kosha (Vannoushadhi varga), Upavana Vinoda, Brhat Jataka, Jyothishyarnava, Grahavasteu darpana etc.. are main references books for vrkshayurveda, along with the books of ayurveda.
The test Vrkshayurveda written by Sharangadhara contain 12 chapters. (The period of this book is to be investigated)
1. Bhoomi Niroopana – Explains the classification, fertility and selection of soil.
2. Beejotpathi Vidhi – About classification and preservation of the seeds.
3. Paada vivaksha – About morphology and physiology of plants.
4. Ropana Vidhi – Location of different types of plants like Vrksha, Gulma, Late etc.
5. Nishechana Vidhi – About irrigations and preparation of special organic manure ‘Kunapa Jala’
The flesh of deer, insects, fish, sheep, goats etc. with portions which have plenty of marrow, fat and lard; mix up the whole mass, put it in a pot and boil well with water and mix the powder of Tila seeds and black gram. Then add milk and honey and some hot water. Place the whole thing in the sun or in a hot places for a fort night. The liquid manure thus prepared is called as ‘Kunapa – Jalam’ which makes the plants grow plumpy.
Examples for preparing special manures:
(i) Mixture of vidanga, Rice, Fish to be ground with cow dung and cow’s urine. This is to be applied to the roots of plants accompained by free watering for 7 days. this will yield fruits and flowers in abundance.
(ii) Meat water for coconut, Dates, Bamboo and Paddy.
(iii) Boiling water with Barley, Green gram Tila Seeds, Black gram and Horse gram.
(iv) Mixture of common salt, bone meal, paddy husk and sand to be burried around the coconut trees.
(v) Night soil (Human faecal matter) is to be applied for Arecanut trees in rainy season.
6. Poshana vidhi – Protecting the plants
7. Druma Raksha – About harvesting and protecting the plants.
8. Taru Chikista – About Panchabhoota/Tridosha constitution of plants, their disease and treatment.
9. Upavana kriya – Maintaining herbal gardens.
10. Nivasasanna Taru Shubhashubha Lakshana – Direction for planting near the houses.
11. Taru mahima – About importance of plants. Here we find a beautiful quotation.
A pond is equal to 10 wells and 10 ponds are equal to one Lake, 10 lakes are equal to one son. But on plant is equal to 10 sons.
12. Chitreekarana – Explains about magical feets to change the habit, colour, smell of flowers and to change the flowering seasons.
(a) The seeds of utpala are soakes in Ankola oil and then put into water. They will spontaneously and surprisingly grow into creepers.
(b) Kumuda root soaked in buffalo dung and urine 7 times and then planted. It quickly turns into a creeper.
(c) Any plant will change the colour of the flower when continuously watered by water of designed colour.
Recipe for producing Red coloured cotton:
Yava (Barley seeds), Tila Seeds and Turmeric leaves are burried at the root of cotton plant and watered regularly. Then cotton plant will yield red cotton.
To produces seedless fruits:
Make balls by grinding together honey, yastimadhu, Tila seeds, Kusta, Madhuka flower and burry the balls near the roots. These methods have to be tried.
In this science, there are explanations about the presence of sense organs in plants, selection and location of plants, special preparation of seed and seed bed, cross grafting, methods of Siriculture etc. There are some interesting explanations like tap letting treatment like blood letting treatment in humans.
Some of the olden day beliefs are now being confirmed by scientists. For example, the Ashwatha tree releases more oxygen. This may be the reason for worshiping and doing pradakshina around this tree by our ancestors. Some of the beliefs may be proved in the future.
There are some explanations about magical effects (India jala) like this:-
The seeds are to be harvested in the place of head of a burried dead animal. After getting the trees, the seeds of that tree if kept in the mouth, the person becomes or seen as that particular animal. The explanations like this are to be research examined and verified in scientific way. The purana is to be verified by our yukthi (Research).
Now, need of the day is to have a thorough literary and experimental researches about this sciences and the useful informations are to be filtered from the junk. These information are to be utilized and incorporated by the departments of Dravyaguna, Botany, Forest, Agriculture and Environment in a joint venture for the benefit of the mankind. This work is to be completed in hurry before any multinational company or foreign countries patent them: