Mr. Pierre Poivre, Intendent of Isles de France, founded The Gardens of Pamplemousses, the earliest in the tropics in 1769, in view of experimental cultivation of spices such as cloves, nutmegs which he introduced in 1770 from the Moluccas. These commodities were controlled by the Dutch who had a monopoly on them in the East Indies. A great festival was held when the first nutmeg ripened in the colony.
Born in 1719, Mr. Pierre Poivre was struck by a cannonball on the wrist in 1745 during a battle against the English on the way to the East Indies. He was amputated of his right arm.
Visitors stop by his bust in the Botanical Gardens, renamed Sir Seewoosagar Ramgoolam Botanical Gardens covering now a surface area of 25 hectares, with a variety of tropical plants introduced from other islands in the Indian Ocean as well as continents.
Let’s pay tribute to this great man who devoted his life to the propagation of plants. Hats off, Mr. Pierre Poivre!
Lza M Natur
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