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Deodar Cedar : The Timber of Gods

Nature has decorated the Northern areas of South Asia with Deodars. Deodar Cedar is a native tree of Western Himalayan region including the northern parts of Afghanistan, Pakistan, Jammu & Kashmir, India and Nepal. It is also found in the North Central states of India Utterkhand and Himachal Pardesh. Deodar is a Sanskrit word which literally means The timber of gods. Botanically known as Cedrus deodara , this tree can attain the approximate height of 50 M and the diameter of the trunk of an adult Deodar Cedar can be almost 3 m.

Deodar Tree, Cedar Cones

Cedar, The Deodar Tree, Photo: Gerard O'Brien

The leaves of Deodar Cedar are very unique in their shapes. They are very thin with an average length of 4 cm  and grown in form of clusters. Deodar is very beautiful and evergreen tree which is also very benevolent for the human usages. It is truly a public interest plant having exquisite wood and very fine usages for agricultural proposes. Deodar Cedar is also ornamental and its fragrance actually doubles the magical atmosphere of the area where it is grown. Deodar Cedar is a cold tolerant plant and it is now grown in many parts of the world having even chilling temperatures. Deodar Cedar is also known for “Chilu Oil” which is actually extracted from old branches of deodar tree. This oil is very useful for herbal proposes in order to treat various types of infections and infestations of insect-pests in crops and plants. Chilu Oil is also used to cope up with the irritation caused in hand weeding operation of fertilizing the rice crops.  Furthermore Deodar has lots of healing properties which are applied in the preparation of  Ayurvedic medicines in India and Pakistan.

The Deodar Cedar can be grown easily in average garden soil but the sites having humid and wind ravaged conditions are not good for its growth. This is quite big evergreen shrub so it needs a large area for its ideal development. The pests and diseases threats are rare in case of Deodar Cedar. Deodar Cedar , the timber of gods is the national tree of Pakistan. In almost all of the northern hill stations of Pakistan Deodar trees can be observed in abundance. In the past Deodar Cedar had a dense population in Pakistan but now the factors like illegal logging , stealing of its precious wood and widening the roads infrastructure have create a severe danger for Deodar. The Government of Pakistan needs to take serious steps to safeguard this magnificent native specie. The dangers to Deodar Cedar can be eliminated by providing the alternate fuel sources to the local population , creating the awareness among the masses and enforcing a permanent ban on the illegal cutting of Deodar Cedar on permanent basis.

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