The National Biodiversity Center (NBC), Ministry of Agriculture and Forests in collaboration with the Dzongkhag Forest Office, Wangduephodrang has successfully established an orchid propagation house and conducted a four-day hands-on training on propagation of orchid (Cymbidium erythraeum) commonly known as ola tshe to 18 farmers of Samtengang, Nisho Gewog, Wangduephodrang from 10th-13th April, 2011. Similar support was provided to 33 households of Simphu village, Trongsa from 17 to 23 March 2011. These will enhance sustainable utilization and management of the orchids in their localities. Prior to the intervention, the practice of orchid cultivation in the village was limited to growing it naturally on the edge of their kitchen garden without proper management.
Samtengang Orchid Management Group comprising 18 households was formed to ensure the proper management of the orchid house for the benefit of the community. The group is part of the newly established Jibdungsa Community Forest.
Orchid flowers from the group will be directly purchased by NBC and supplied to Quantum Pharmaceuticals Limited (QPL), Switzerland for production of a cosmetic product (REDEEM) and the surplus will be sold in the market by the community. The income generated through the sale of flowers and saplings will strengthen the functioning and sustainability of the Community Forestry Group.