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A view of flowers at Mughal Garden in Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi

Mughal Garden

NEW DELHI, SEP 12,(UITV): Spread over a vast expanse of 15 acres, Mughal Gardens has often been portrayed, and deservedly so, as the soul of the Presidential Palace. The Mughal Gardens draw its inspiration from the Mughal Gardens of Jammu and Kashmir, the gardens around the Taj Mahal and even miniature paintings of India and Persia.

Sir Edwin Lutyens had finalized the designs of the Mughal Gardens as early as 1917, however, it was only during the year 1928-1929 that plantings were done. His collaborator for the gardens was Director of Horticulture, William Mustoe. Like the building of Rashtrapati Bhavan have two different styles of architecture, Indian and western, similarly, Sir Lutyens brought together two different horticulture traditions together for the gardens, the Mughal style and the English flower garden. Mughal canals, terraces and flowering shrubs are beautifully blended with European flowerbeds, lawns and private hedges.

In Christopher Hussey’s The Life of Sir Edwin Lutyens, Sir Lutyens’ wife has written that the garden was a “paradise.” She added, “…flowers are set in such masses, producing a riot of colour and scents, that, when, with the fountains playing continually, there is not the least sense of stiffness. The round garden beyond beats everything for sheer beauty and is beyond words."

The Mughal Gardens had up till now been opened for the public only during the annual festival, Udyanotsav, held in the months of February-March but Mughal Gardens, which forms the third Circuit of Rashtrapati Bhavan tour, will now be open for the public from August till March.The prime attractions of Udyanostav 2016 were Tulips and Primulas.

The most remarkable expression of democracy has been opening up of the gardens and grounds for the public. Circuit three of the tour takes us through the pristine Mughal Gardens of Rashtrapati Bhavan that have been designed as three successive terraces. It is said that the large geometrical designs of the garden can only be appreciated from the first story of the building. First being the Rectangular Garden, followed by Long Garden and finally the Circular Garden.