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If you pass by the Japanese Garden in Sector 31, you can come across red flowery trees. These are the pomegranate trees. Also known as anar in India and Granada in Spanish, these trees are around 5 to 8m tall. In Chandigarh, one would find it at the Japanese Garden and some old houses too.
A native from Iran to the Himalayas in Northern India, pomegranate is widely grown in sub tropical and tropical areas. It is cultivated throughout India. The tree bears fruits within four-five years of planting. The major commercial areas of production are Kullu, Nasik and Pune.
These trees can live for over 200 years. These trees can be grown from a seed and need well-drained soil to grow.
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Pomegranate can help cure diabetes and cancer, Apart from its medicinal values, these trees are also used as a planting material for container gardening. The rind of unripe fruits and flowers are used as natural dye.
The fruit contains 78 per cent water, 5 per cent fibre, 1.6 per cent protein, 16-18 per cent carbohydrates (sugar). Each 100gm fruit flesh may contain 10mg calcium, 70mg phosphorus and sufficient quantity of iron and vitamin C.
The ancient sightings of the pomegranate were on the pillars of the Solomon’s temple in Jerusalem, on the robes of Jewish priests, and in mosaics from ancient Rome (including Pompeii) where it was called the “Phoenician apple.” Its twigs were worn on Roman women’s he addresses to signify marital status. In Zoroastrian temples, pomegranates were used to symbolize eternal life and were associated with fertility.
A symbol of strength in ancient Persia, the army of Xerxes carried spears with pomegranates on the tip (instead of spikes) when they invaded Greece in 480 BC. Pomegranates were also depicted on the walls of the royal palace and fortress Alhambra of the Islamic Nasrid Dynasty by the Moors in Spain.
They even renamed one of their cities after the fruit.More than just a nutritious food source, the pomegranate was an integral part of many cultures.It was celebrated by the Buddha, and was considered one of the three blessed fruits, often being represented in Buddhist art. It was also depicted on the Temple of the Founder of Zen, to honor Bodhidharma.
The pomegranate became popular in the Middle Eastern civilizations 6000 years ago largely because its dense nutrition and juice provided sustenance for long journeys.
Pomegranate has a cure for many diseases. Its nutrients are an effective tool in preventing degenerative and inflammatory ailments such as cancer, heart disease, and arthritis pomegranate components affect diseases such as diabetes, cancer, rhinovirus, the common cold, coronary artery disease, kidney disease, and brain injury.