Monday, November 28, 2011

The Making of a Tropical Garden

I have been very busy these days creating a little garden outside. I think I may have a case of the backyard blitz. Lol.

There are plenty of trees around our house, but most of the trees are fruit trees. It's not that I don't like having fruit trees around me, it's just that it has been planted in such away that I just don't find it aesthetically appealing. The villa comes with a gardener. I have tried being subtle, telling him that we could spruce things up with some grass and flowers but he told me that grass and flowers is a waste of good ground space. Why plant grass when we could plant vegetables? He added grass and flowers are good if we were cows. Yes, I caught then sarcasm. Luckily we are not paying the man a single cent, otherwise he'd be out of a job if it was up to me. So underneath the all the fruit trees, he's planted all sorts of veges, mostly the crawly ones like string beans. Although good for our diet, these plants are visually repulsive. They grow in such a way that they look unkept and wild. Not quite the lovely sanctuary I could envision myself in. I wanted my pretty garden and what I want, I will get!

Fortunately, there is a little piece of area by the side of our house. It is mostly sand and stones. The gardener didnt touch it as he claims it is a lot of work to tend to it. For weeks I have been observing that little plot and noticed that it is actually the one spot that gets the best part of the morning sun but is still well shaded enough to avoid the harsh afternoon sun. That plot definitely had potential. I just had to figure out what to do with it.

One morning, I was invited by the mom of one of my big girl's classmate for coffee at her home. It was a very nice morning so we decided to sit outside at the patio. I stepped outside and was absolutely smitten. I swear it was like being back in Malaysia. She had manage to create a tropical sort of garden. Then it came to me, my plot would be perfect for a tropical garden and that got the ball rolling.

I had pestered DH with my idea. He didn't take me seriously. He actually thought I was quite bonkers for wanting to create a garden on what was literally just sand an stones. Had to prove to him that I most definitely have green thumbs and nothing can stop me from having that tropical garden of mine.

I used guilt to get DH to take me to a nursery (I could have gone alone but the idea of lugging pots of plants, bags of soils and fertilizers out of the car seemed better with DH doing it instead of me.)

DH was skeptical all the way but he did seem delighted when he saw the squares of fresh grass. He thought it was better to start with a few pieces first in case it didnt work out. Boy, am I going to prove him wrong. I got myself a frangipani tree, a fan palm, a kanna, five exoras and two hibiscus. It wouldn't be a tropical garden without hibiscus. We bought bags and bags of soil and fertilizers (which stunk the car but hey, no pain, no gain right?). Just to appease hubs, I only got 10 squares of grass. Yup, I paid. Getting my idea through had required sacrifice on my part. Before we left, hubs saw these cute winter flowers that I just couldn't be bothered to learn their names as I knew it wouldn't be able to last till summer and I got those as well just for hubs sake. They didn't fit into my whole tropical garden them but I got 20 of them consoling myself with the fact that they would probably be gone in 6 months. Besides, I too thought that they are kind of pretty.

So we begin planting. My gardener was right, it does take a lot of work but for the sake of my dream, I persevered. It's been a week now and my little garden is starting to look quite good. Hubs quite impressed and eagerly volunteers to water it each day. Had to educate him first on the whole over watering concept first otherwise my tropical garden will end up being a lily pond instead. Lol.

I am falling more in lobe with my garden each passing day and I hope the plants and grasses realize it and reciprocate. Can't wait to start blogging when my garden is fully done and have thrived to it's utmost potential. So far, it does look like my green thumbs are still well and working. Watch out for my next post about my garden. Tropical garden, here we come! :)

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