Cupertino Sister

Cupertino, Calif., Councilwoman Savita Vaidhyanathan has proposed her city create a "healing garden" inspired by the Ekamravan garden in Bhubaneswar, India. The Indian American politician first made the suggestion in November when she was the city’s mayor. (Facebook photo)

Inspired by the Ekamravan garden in Bhubaneswar, India, Indian American Councilwoman in Cupertino, Calif., Savita Vaidhyanathan, has proposed her city create a “healing garden.”

Vaidhyanathan, who first offered the proposal Nov. 7 while she was still serving as mayor of the city, made the suggestion following her trip to Cupertino’s sister city Bhubaneswar in October.

The Ekamravan garden focuses on growing a range of medicinal herbs and plants. It covers a 280 yard-long strip of land that extends along the western bank of Bhubaneswar’s Bindusagar lake and contains more than 200 different medicinal plants believed to treat a diverse range of ailments from diabetes to asthma to digestive problems, according to its promotional website.

Vaidhyanathan is proposing that her city work with Bhubaneswar, which has been a Cupertino sister city since 2012, to create a similar healing garden with the same medicinal plants found in Bhubaneswar, the Mercury News reported.

In speaking of her visit to the garden, Vaidhyanathan told the Mercury News that, after being bit by a mosquito, a host brought a leaf and rubbed it on her hand and “within seconds the itching stopped.”

“There was no swelling whatsoever, so I was quite surprised,” she said in the report. “I thought, ‘Wow! This really does work,’ and I felt that this was something that I would like to bring back from that city to our city.”

The councilwoman, who noted that residents in her city have enjoyed cherry blossom trees that came from Toyokawa, Japan, said it would be very important to celebrate something from the city’s India-based sister city.

“It would be nice for elementary school kids to learn about something from a sister city, and this is something that they have in their city for us to learn about,” she added in the report.

The proposal remains in the planning stages. Once a potential location for the garden is chosen by city staff, a proposal would be submitted to the council for approval, the report said.

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