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many of the Karens in Tharrawaddy and Prome, and induced them to plant by the promise of definite taungya grounds. The result was that some 250 acres were planted in that year, and upwards of 300 in the following. In 1875-6 the area planted had risen to about 1050 acres. It was evident that the method of cultivation must be restricted to reserves and areas which could be effectually fire protected. This for some years curtailed the expansion, and by the end of 1879-80 only about 2500 acres had been planted out. By this time, however, reservation had been considerably extended, and the population had become accustomed to the employment thus offered, which gave them a regular income, in addition to the crops which they were able to raise just as in former times; and it became possible to work over larger areas, and at the same time to command better average results. Even the uncivilised Karens had become aware that we were conferring a favour rather than seeking one, which had been their feeling at the outset. We also employ these men in girdling, timber works and other forest operations, and the disbursement of several lakhs of rupees per annum have transformed these tribes, who in former times hardly ever earned any money, from an antagonistic nuisance to Forest Conservancy into the most loyal servants of the Department. This naturally could not have been effected in the same satisfactory manner without the settlements on the principle described. Thus the extension of taungya arboriculture rose in 1880-81 by upwards of 1000 acres and went on growing till it culminated in 1897-8 in the planting up of 4100 acres. The area recorded as sufficiently successful by the end of this year amounts to 52,000 acres.
The cost of these operations have up to date amounted to some Rs.7,85,000, or Rs.15 per acre, a sum which includes all weeding and cleaning, but not thinning operations, which must sooner or later be taken in hand; for, as in the case of deodar and many other species, the poles in a more or less compact young teak growth, such as found in plantations, do not get suppressed and killed out soon enough, and getting drawn up in the crowd prevent the full and early development of dominant stems.
This enormous annual extension of the teak taungya plantations is very satisfactory, and the productiveness of large forest areas has been greatly increased by these measures. Of course, there may be calamities such as fires and insects, but even discounting these, I think it may be safely assumed that the areas so far planted will, when mature, yield an annual supply of 30,000 tons of timber, and an income of 7 to 8 lakhs of rupees.
It has, however, been asserted, and I fear sometimes on good grounds, that in the desire to bring very large areas within the scope of rapid improvement, the selection of the places to be cultivated has not, of late, been always entirely judicious, and has included places where the tree is already sufficiently represented and where
no impediments existed to secure its regeneration by means of protection and improvement fellings. Under such conditions, teak taungya cultivation is out of place. It may be advisable to curtail the wholesale extension of teak taungya plantations, and to divert the funds which thereby become available to protection and sylvicultural measures. Prima facie such plantations should be restricted to areas more or less under the influence of dense shading, gregariously flowering bamboos, and to such localities where the tree has been exterminated, care being taken not to try to extend them to areas where the soil and other physical conditions are unsuitable to the tree. For such localities the method was originally devised. In forests, under cover of dense bamboo, no great apprehension need be felt about the occasional damage done to a few teak trees in a ya, or even about their destruction. It is, moreover, very difficult to judge from isolated trees left standing in a taungya what their chances would have been if the natural forest had been left standing, and even less can be told from stumps found; but such observations have been used to prove the assertion that the taungya cultivation had been injudiciously extended of late. Though some seed-bearers even may exist and grow up in gregariously flowering bamboo forests, the dense cover prevents all possibility of regeneration, except at long intervals during the period of flowering, and it will, under such circumstances, be better to create scattered, compact, well-stocked areas even at the sacrifice of a teak tree here and there."
There was one criticism of the teak plantations, which had thus been made with such success and at so low a cost in Burma, which was brought forward towards the end of the period here considered. The work of thinning, which Ribbentrop says is essential, had not been carried out to the degree which was essential. The same criticism was made in the early days of the Nilumbar operations, both by the Marquis of Tweedale, then Governor of Madras (I, p. 97), and by Cleghorn (I, p. 304). The thinning of the young plantations was necessary, and should have been carried out even if it meant postponing the extension of the plantations for a few years. This remark applied as forcibly to Burma, where the small staff and heavy work connected with reservation of forest areas and the introduction of protection left little time to the officers for duties of a more professional nature. It was admitted that many of the youug crops were suffering from want of this necessary sylvicultural operation.
The next plantation work of considerable magnitude which demands consideration is that connected with the deodar in
the Western Himalaya, in the Punjab and North-West Provinces. The idea had been originally entertained of forming large plantations in areas selected in accessible positions from which the material could easily be extracted, placed in the rivers and floated down to the plains. For many reasons this idea did not eventuate, and no extensive plantations of this species existed at the close of the century. Considerable attention was, however, paid to the artificial cultivation of this tree, and a great amount of data on the subject of its sylvicultural requirements had been collected. In the aggregate a certain number of areas had been stocked and were annually being increased by several hundred acres in accordance with the provisions of existing working plans. For instance, the working plan for the Mundali Forest in Jaunsar (North-West Provinces) prescribed the planting of upwards of 200 acres annually. The difficulties experienced here were principally of a twofold nature. The seed was often sown in patches in terrace formation on contour lines. The Indigofera, a pernicious weed, grew up between the prepared lines to a height of 8 feet or so, and choked out the young plants. The other enemy proved to be species of root-feeding insects, which either destroyed the roots or cut through the young seedlings. Since there was no market for species which were interfering with young existing deodar on the ground, the method was resorted to of girdling the trees. Mistakes were inevitably made in overdoing this operation, and thereby losing the young deodar whose condition it was wished to assist. Nevertheless, by 1900 considerable success had been attained in work of the kind, as also in filling up blanks in existing old woods, and the way had been prepared for progress on a larger scale in the future.
The other plantations in the Punjab requiring notice are those of the sissu (Dalbergia Sissoo). These are of two typesthe one maintained by irrigation water and the other grown on areas where the subsoil moisture is sufficient. The famous Changa Manga plantation (of which further details will be given in a subsequent part of this work) is the most important and successful. The extent of this plantation amounted to 8400 acres in 1900. It is situated almost forty miles from Lahore, and as one approaches it across the sun-baked, barren, khakicoloured country the cool green upstanding line of the plantation presents an extraordinary contrast. This plantation is one of the classic pieces of work of this nature, since it was the
first undertaken on this scale. Ribbentrop describes the formation as follows: It was established in the centre of the dry forest area, where the long-rooted bar trees alone can exist, but is now, under the influence of irrigation, covered with a complete crop of sissu and mulberry. The plantation was begun in 1866, but no success could at first be obtained. In 1868 Mr. Amery, then in charge, had the idea of employing a trench and ridge system. When I took over the division, though but a comparatively small area had been stocked, I felt convinced the correct principle had been ascertained, and within a few years the whole area was planted. The plantation had been a sylvicultural and financial success in spite of the high rate for canal water charged against it. Under the working plan it is treated as coppice with a few standards, and we are already occupied in reaping the crop of a second rotation." The material, it may be added, was sold in Lahore. Most of the other type of sissu plantations on the sailaba lands which receive the percolation from the rivers, which suits this species admirably, were established between 1867 and 1874. The growth of the species is even better on these lands than at Changa Manga, and as there is no water rent to pay the financial results have been even better.
The plantation work of importance in Bengal was mainly confined to the Chittagong Division in Eastern Bengal. A plantation of teak was made near Kaptai on the banks of the Karnafuli River, some forty odd miles up from Chittagong. The plantation was known as the Sitapahar teak plantation and was commenced about 1871-2. It consisted of 600 acres of fully stocked area and had cost Rs.70,000. This plantation, which showed great promise, was unfortunately blown clean out in October, 1897, as it lay in the path of a terrible cyclone which swept up into the hills from the Bay of Bengal, causing a great loss of life in the low-lying coastal areas. The writer was in charge of the division and had the opportunity of conducting Mr. Ribbentrop, Inspector-General, who made a personal visit to the devastated area.
In the neighbourhood of Kaptai there were some experimental plots, for they were scarcely more, of various species, including mahogany and rubber trees. The latter was being planted out with the object of extending a first beginning of a plantation here during the closing years of the century. Great difficulty was experienced in the regeneration of the sâl in some of the forests in Bengal (Duars). In 1875 Schlich clear