His Majesty The King, along with the Zhung Dratshang led by His Holiness the Je Khenpo, planted 400 trees around the Thangzona in Punakha on Tuesday 19th April.
The nine species of trees of religious and ornamental value included Tsenden the sacred Cypress tree; Nyasheshing, the fruit bearing Jamun tree; Chemshing from which the holy prayer beads are made; Tsampakha Shing; whose seeds encased in transparent petals are used for religious offerings, Jangchushing, the Sacred Fig tree under which the Buddha attained enlightenment; Elaeocarpus, from which the Rudraksha beads are made; and ornamental trees like Jacaranda, Royal Poinciana, and Wild Cherry.
The saplings, sourced by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forests, were planted as part of the Zhabdrung Kuchoe celebrations to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Zhabdrung’s arrival in Bhutan, and in honour of the Royal Birth.
The Tsugla Lopen of the Zhung Dratshang said that in Buddhism, trees are revered as the source of life, and therefore the act of planting trees would generate merit for the benefit of the entire country.
“The Zhung Dratshang, as one of the largest institutions in the country, has maintained the noble tradition of respect for our environment from the times of the Zhabdrung. We support and encourage activities which make our natural environment better, for the benefit of all sentient beings of the world.”
“On this day, we recommit ourselves to preserving our pristine natural environment, and building a clean and beautiful country,” he said.
Following the tree plantation, His Holiness the Je Khenpo, the Lopens and Lam Netens offered Tendrel Lekdhar to His Royal Highness The Gyalsey.