Thursday, February 28, 2008

God's Own Country

Winters are on ebb and the spring sowings are waiting to bloom. In the absence of anything more exciting in the garden, I invited my hubby, fresh from the memories of his trip to south India, to write a post on his experience.. "There is something very amusing about living in a big country like India as I realized first hand when the opportunity to visit the southernmost part of country came my way. My job took me to the southern states of Kerala and GoaKerala is nick named ‘God’s own country’ and rightly so, as its natural scenery, backwaters, sprawling coconut trees and crystal clear beaches make it a near heavenly abode. Sea has always enamored me and this sojourn through the backwaters was Godsend I was quite surprised by the contrast southern India had in respect to where I live; it was like descending on a different civilization altogether. The weather was very hot and humid in contrast to the cold wave haunting us in North. Another difference, as I shamefully admit, was the exemplary cleanliness and discipline in the lifestyle of South in contrast with the chaotic North. The place abounds in coconuts and as generally happens locals devise ingenious ways to put the surplus to good use; these cute simians are made from sculpting a whole coconut; one can even hear the gurgle of the coconut water on shaking them! Southern India falls in the Tropical zone and the lush greenery testified to the equatorial climate of the place. Difference in weather was evident from the trees laden with unripe mangos, which do not appear before April on trees in North. Shortly after getting acclimatized to the changed weather conditions my tour took me to Kanyakumari, which is the southernmost point of Indian mainland A 15 min ferry ride took us to these two small pieces of rock, which may loosely be called Islands, although they are woefully small to be called so. It was here that the great Indian scholar, philosopher and thinker Swami Vivekananda meditated in his final days and hence the rocks are named after him as Vivekananda rocks. In its final step the tour came to Goa, a place which was a Portuguese colony till as late as 1961 and was acceded to Indian Union in that year. There is a distinct Portuguese influence in the culture and ethos, and that’s exactly what I loved about the place; a testimony to the fact that an amalgamation of various cultures facilitated by the migrant population makes a place very interesting and livable. This Temple, Shantadurga, although a Hindu temple, has a church like façade and it aptly illustrates the influence Portuguese have had on the life and customs of Goa. Crystalline beaches dot the whole of Goan boundary alongside the Arabian Sea and the whole place appears always to be in a festive mood; there must be something related to the aura or to the vibrations being emitted by the jovial people there, that as soon you step on Goan soil you can feel a light and happy feeling inside. All this Sun, Sea and Beach Sand made me yearn for a sedate life near the Sea, but not before I have fulfilled my earthly obligations…not before I have collected enough memories to reflect upon in those sedate days..."

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Garden Bloggers Blooms Day Feb15

Its time for another Garden Bloggers Blooms Day hosted on the 15th of every month by Carol at May Dreams Garden , but this time my GBBD post has a slight twist! As I have come to Delhi at my Mom's place for some time, the pics featured here are from a Community Garden in the colony where we 029 Spring is in full glory here.There were rows and rows of lovely Calendulas bordered by some Indian 001 flowers 002 flowers 005 And there were rows of Sweet William bordered by very sweet smelling Alyssum.My cutie pie is happily providing scale:) flowers 016 flowers 018 There were these round beds full of some nice seasonal annuals beneath the lined Ashoka trees. flowers 006 Alyssum flowers 013 Verbena flowers 032 Phlox flowers 035 These two photos are of an unidentified bloom.I urge my blogger friends to help me identify it...b'coz it's lovely and I would like to grow it my garden too. flowers 041 flowers 039 In one corner of the garden were these somewhat neglected Kalanchoes (kalanchoe mortagei )blooming freely in gay abandon! flowers 046 flowers 047 The Garden was lined by some very tall Eucalyptus trees which were swaying happily in the spring breeze against the beautiful blue backdrop of crystal clear sky. flowers 043 My daughter rejoiced and very zealously posed for 021 In this way my garden visit came to end, but I will always remember this garden which, though not very big in size, had certain very impressive features like lovely colour combinations, neatly cut hedges and myriad blooms.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Colour in the Garden

Interesting concepts never seem to elude garden bloggers. Bloghopping I came across Nan ondra’s blog post about the color in the garden and instantly loved the idea. I had to do some digging in the hard disc to come up with these purple blooms stored somewhere in the digital memory which I thought are worth reviving through my post . A symbol of nobility and spirituality, purple is a mix of cool blue and hot red; which makes it all the more pertinent to have a predominantly purple post in this change of season from cold to warm. ?


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