Meet the mother of Trees #WATWB

“I believe the choice to become a mother is the choice to become one of the greatest spiritual teachers there is.” – Oprah Winfrey

Saalumarada Thimmakka is 107 years old. She is as fit as a fiddle and her work has bought fame not only to her but also to India. She has planted over 8,000 trees in 80 years. Last month she won the prestigious Padam Shri. She also has other awards and honours to her kitty. With her work, she has earned herself a place in the prestigious list of BBCs 100 most influential women.

Why did she plant so many trees? Well, Saalumarada was born in a poor family in Karnataka and never went to school. She was known as Thimmaka during her childhood. She worked as a quarry labourer at an early age. In 1928 she married Chikkayya, also a labourer. After many years of their marriage, the couple could not have children. Salumarada was so depressed that she wanted to commit suicide at the age of 40 since she could not bore children.

Her husband was very supportive and helped her come out of the thought of suicide. Together they planned to fill in the emptiness in their life. They decided to plant banyan trees and look after them as their children. In 1948, they decide to plant trees from their village. Thus their journey towards parenthood started. They worked selflessly, untired and with pure love and dedication towards planting trees and looking after them till they had fruit. They started with 10 plants in the first year and then kept planting more saplings in the years to come. Even after her husband’s death, she did not stop looking after and planting more trees.

Now she has 8,000 trees which include more than 400 banyan trees. She is also lovingly known as ‘Vriksha Mathe (mother of trees)’Her story is full of determination and selfless love towards her children.

For every dark, negative story out there, there is a positive, heartwarming story that will add some light and lift the human spirit. The last Friday of every month bloggers will share their stories led by five co-hosts, this month’s co-hosts are Sylvia McGrath, Damyanti Biswas, Shilpa Garg Dan Antion, and Belinda Witzenhausen. To learn more about #WATWB or to join us click here!

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Shubhra Rastogi Written by:

Well, about me I can say that I am a certified dentist, healthcare analyst, medical writer and above all a mother of a 6-year-old. Most of my day to day activities revolve around her and she is my inspiration to start this blog. As a mother, I experimented with a lot of new things for my little one in a quest to find the best for her. I just want to share my experiences of being a happy and content mum.

13 Comments

  1. March 29, 2019
    Reply

    “They decided to plant banyan trees and look after them as their children.” This story gives me so much joy – to know that no matter what life gives us or doesn’t give us, we can make a positive difference. It’s also good to know others care for trees in this way.

    • Shubhra Rastogi
      March 29, 2019
      Reply

      Thanks for visiting by Joanna. This story is indeed beautiful. The minute I read it I knew I am going to share it this time.

  2. March 29, 2019
    Reply

    This story makes my heart crack open with joy. What a gift she’s given to the world, and what a joy she is to celebrate. Thanks for sharing!

    • Shubhra Rastogi
      March 29, 2019
      Reply

      Thanks, Deborah. She has indeed given a lovely gift to the world. Thanks for visiting by!

    • Shubhra Rastogi
      April 1, 2019
      Reply

      My pleasure Anou. Thanks for visiting by.

  3. March 30, 2019
    Reply

    wow that is amazing 107 years and having planted 8000 trees We need more people like her She really a purposeful life

    • Shubhra Rastogi
      April 1, 2019
      Reply

      Definitely, Marja, we need more people like her

  4. March 31, 2019
    Reply

    I’ve read her story before, but it was great to be reminded of it again. Someday, I also hope to be the mother of trees. Thanks for the share, Shubhra, and for your support of WATWB.

    • Shubhra Rastogi
      April 1, 2019
      Reply

      Thanks, Damyanti. I am sure someday you will become the mother of trees as well.

  5. Deborah
    April 8, 2019
    Reply

    Nice story about adding beauty to the world.

    • Shubhra Rastogi
      April 8, 2019
      Reply

      Thanks Deborah

  6. April 16, 2019
    Reply

    Hi Shubhra,
    Glad to see Saalumarada Thimmakka featured here. No doubt an amazing woman. She has been such an inspiration for countless people.
    Her devotion and commitment to greening the environment is all the more relevant today when the dangers of climate change are no longer a fear but a reality.
    — Pradeep | bpradeepnair.blogspot.com

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