Friday, May 07, 2010

Flora and Fauna : My Garden

There are some places where I lose myself.  Completely.  There are also some people with whom I lose myself, not completely though.  If I carry on with the topic of people, I would certainly digress from the topic of this blog so, let me focus. The teeny weeny 5 feet by 5 feet garden in the front of our house is one such place, where I lose myself and yet find my soul being refreshed.

Garden sounds quite an  overwhelming name  to the small patch of soil that I call a garden with no less grandeour and emphasis given to a botanical garden in hillstations or the hanging gardens of Babylon. When we bought the house that we are residing in now, Joe was quite unhappy about cementing the four unconstructed sides surrounding our house ( which was not much).  The independant house had very little space to move around and we barely kept minimal unbuilt spaces.  While we decided to pave the miniscule backyard with tiles, we decided to open the sides and this 5 feet into 5 feet space near the gate, so that we can be in constant touch with mother earth.

We started with major dreams around this garden like any beginner would have, such as  having a water fountain and paving it with Korean grass, having statues, seating arrangements etc etc., not considering the fact that this tiny place might not hold all these accessories, even one at a time.  However, we continued dreaming until the truth hit us, after we started living there.

I decided to make the most of this space and started with bringing in plants intiatlly nurtured and grown in my parents place, and then growing it here. Our garden had a splendid start with atleast around 15 well grown potted plants for our housewarming and then my lack of experience in dealing with plants started to show slowly, but steadily.  This was a couple of years ago.

But, I am quick learner you see and I started learning and growing these potted plants.  I read up material, asked the people who run nurseries for tips, took hints from my friends who had gardens and I started seeing the results.

Today our garden is home to atleast 30 potted plants, around 24 varieties of plants, flowering and non flowering both, and in the centre of our plants is my long time dream of a flower shaped concrete fish tank with a lots of ornamental fish.  The plants are lush green, bright and beautiful. And I almost forgot there are some terracotta pots and a figurine of a horse that I have put in a corner to make my garden look a little more pleasing.  I went along with a friend of mine to ECR, to pick up the pots and got it delivered to my city office and from there brought it home by car. I call this is "Terracotta corner".

Every morning one of the first things that I do is to water them, talk to them, cajole them, touch them and assure them that I am around for them.  One of the last things I do at the end of the day, actually in the night is the repeat of my morning activity.  It is satisfying to see a plant grow well and one of the most joyous moments is to see a bud coming out and finally bloom into a flower. 
Other than the plants and the fishes that I take care of, there are frogs, chameloens and little insects that I see occasionally there.  Birds do come, but they fly away as soon as they see me and there are these pestering rats that come and dig holes in the ground, which I promptly fill up during a weekend. On an average I spend around 15 minutes everyday watering the plants and feeding the fish.

I get my heart's fill of quality time with my flora and fauna during the weekends.  I spend atleast 3 hours on saturday working in this green patch. Armoured with the garden tools, manure, and gloves  I pull out every single pot, loosen up the soil by digging it carefully, in the process touch them, hold them and talk to them, and sometimes add some manure to the sides, so that they grow well.  The recent manure that I picked up for them is called Bio-enzymes that can help the plants in Climate related stress too.  :-).  Then I clean up the fish tank, initially I used scrub the tank till my hands hurt and ached, but now I use a little bleaching powder to make the tank look sparkling clean.

And every weekend, I also get the joy of rearranging the pots and plants so that I have a different garden scape.  It definitely is back breaking work, but the joy you get after this is worth all the pain that I go through and it also gives me the much needed exercise for the week.  I had recently put up the pictures of the garden in my website and I had so many compliments for my garden.

The best part of my weekend after all the hardwork is just looking at the garden, enjoying the greenery and smile at the fish playing... or simply staring at this little green patch in solitude.

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