Pakistan Native Nursery/Pakistan Native Plants

     Aim

Establishment of Pakistan Native Nursery is an attempt to promote the cultivation culture of native plants for revival of natural beauty, restoration  of natural habitats for soil reclamation, and biodiversity conservation.

     History

Initially we have established the plants of Nannorhops ritchiana, usually known as Mezerae palm, which is a hardy shrubby plant used for cottage industry, where the people are dependent for their livelihood on the leaves of this plant. But due to great biotic pressure, the population is decreasing day by day. On the other side, its propagation takes place through vegetative and seed germination. The seed is very stony and needs at least 4-5 months for germination. Presently we have established 2-3 years plants ready to be transferred to the field. This plant is further a good example for combating the climate change and rehabilitation of xeric environment, especially the areas where there is scarcity of water and harsh climatic factors.

Nannorrhops ritchiana is usually known as Mezerae in Pashto language or Mazari Palm. This  is the only single species in the genus Nannorrhops in the Palmae family or Arecaceae. This is native to southwestern Asia, from the southeast of the Arabian Peninsula east through Iran and Afghanistan to Pakistan and northwestern India, growing at altitudes of up to 1600 m.

It is a shrub like clumping palm, with several stems growing from a single base. The stem grows slowly and often tightly together, reaching 1-2 m or more tall. It is a Fan palm  with the leaves long, smooth petiole terminating in a rounded fan of 20-30 leaflets, 30-120 cm long, with a distinct glaucous blue-green to grey-green colour.

The flowers are borne in tall, open clusters up to 3 m long at the top of the stems. It is usually dioecious with male and female flowers on separate plants. The fruit is a brown drupe. The individual stem is monocarpic, dying back to the ground after flowering, with the plant continuing growth from basal sprouts.