VAN VIGYAN KENDRA, CHESSA
The Van Vigyan Kendra is situated at Chessa in the foot hill plains of tropical semi evergreen forests spread over an area of 100 ha. The location is characterized by the vegetation consisting of Pterospermum acerifolium, Pterygota alata, Talauma hedgsonii, Stereospermum chelonoides, Gynocordia odorata, Amoora wallichii, Duabanga grandiflora, Ficus spp., Artocarpus chaplasha, Eleocarpus aristatus, Altingia excelsa, Quercus rex, Syzygium formosum etc. This vegetation also has supported other shade loving herbs, shrubs and climbers thus making the site an ideal one for taking up forestry field research activities in a systematic manner. This area is bordered by the inner line road from Tarajuli to Daflagarh on the southern side, a perennial stream on the eastern side and Chessa village on the west. Northern boundary is demarcated by the steeply rising hill range of Durpong Reserve Forests. It is situated about 55 Km from Itanagar. This was the main centre of silvicultural research activities of the Department of Environment and Forests until 1993. With formation of State Forest research Institute ( SFRI ) with Headquarter at Itanagar, Van Vigyan Kendra has mainly been a centre of field experiments holding diverse genetic plant resources of timber and non timber forest produces.
The entire 100 ha area has been systematically developed with as many as 65 blocks (as can be seen from the lay out map) on both sides of the main entrance road with number of inspection paths leading to various sections and blocks. Since the centre is situated along the Assam border, the front side is devoted for the office and residential complexes to prevent entry of unauthorized persons including preventions of entry of cattle.
Van vigyan Kendra, Chessa was established in the year 1981 to cater to the needs of field research of Silviculture, tree improvement, quality seed production, germplasm collection, introduction and evaluation of both timber and non timber species etc. An area of 100 ha area was developed with systematic layout of various experimental plots, residential and non residential buildings, training facility, green houses, grafting houses, nurseries, guest house etc. Following is the land mark development of VVK, Chessa.
|1981 – 82||Van Vigyan Kendra Chessa established Teak germplasm bank and seed orchard, nursery, Bambusetum, provenance trial plots and Arboretum.|
|1982||Systematic botanist and forest Geneticist joined|
|1985||Seed orchards of 10 local tree species added. vigorous plus tree selection. Bamboo germ plasm bank established. Soil Scientist and Forest Zoologist Joined.|
|1987||Seed orchards of medicinal trees like T. chebula, T. beleirica and Emblica officinalis established Medicinal plant garden established.|
|1990||Oil yielding trees like Simarouba glauca planted in performance trial plots.|
|1991||Extension of seed orchards|
|1992||Germ plasm bank for broom grass added.|
|1994||Under planting experiments started multi-tier plantations.|
|1995||Medicinal plant experimental plantations as model production farms|
|1998||Cane propagations and establishment of cane nursery.|
|2001||The first ever canetum in northeast India established with 14 species.|
|2002||Large scale bamboo, cane and Medicinal plant seedling production.|
Establishment of Mist Chamber and demonstration plot of medicinal plants under National Medicinal Plant Project.
|2004||Establishment of bamboo propagation Center with nursery and mist chamber under Cane Bamboo Medicinal Plant Development Project.|
The above activities carried out at chessa centre have made it a pioneering centre for forestry research, forest genetic resource conservation and also a centre for education and extension services. It is pertinent to mention here that though remotely located this centre has the distinctions of having:
- The largest number of forestry research plots.
- The largest bambusetum in the region and perhaps in the country.
- The largest clonal seed orchard for teak with over132 clones.
- The first ever seed orchards and germ plasm banks for indigenous species like Bombax ceiba, Michelia champaca, Terminalia myriocarpa, Altingia excelsa, Phoebe goalparensis, Chukrasia tabularis, Acrocarpus fraxinifolius, Gmelina arborea,
- First bamboo germplasm bank Bambusa tulda, B. nutans, B. pallida, B. balcooa, Bambusa sp. (nangal), D. giganteus, D.hamiltonii , B.affinis
- First Germplasm bank for Broom grass.
- The first ever canetum with 14 species of canes belonging to 4 genera.
- The largest germ plasm in the region for Medicinal plants etc.
Under Van Vigyan Kendra, Chessa, the clonal seed orchards of 12 species have been established they are:
- Acrocarpus fraxinifolius (Mandhani)
- Chukrasia tabularis (Bogipoma)
- Tectona grandis (Teak)
- Terminalia myriocarpa (Hollock)
- Gmelina arborea (Gamari)
- Michelia champaca (Tita sopa)
- Phoebe goalparensis (Bonsum)
- Bombax ceiba (Semul)
- Altingia excelsa (Jutli)
- Morus laevigata (Bola)
- Anthocephalus chinensis (Kadam)
- Duabanga grandiflora (Khokhan)