Friday, July 15, 2011

mary, mary, quite contemporary, how does your garden grow?


Ah, the lushness of summer. You sit at the poolside of your beautiful mansion, sipping a maitai as you admire the garden of Eden you have created: the trickling of the fountain, the rose bushes in every shade of pink, the vegetable plot at the back of the house teeming with fresh herbs, heirloom tomatoes and spaghetti squash. You laugh at the thought that most of your friends don't even know what spaghetti squash is.

Then back to life from your daydream. There is no mansion, the jardin de utopia is just that- an imaginary place of perfection far beyond your currently reality. You live in a flat, in a large city with a tiny balcony that overlooks a crowded street. No waltzing out to your garden to pick fresh lemons, no luxury of fresh herbs to sprinkle on your meals, no plush flowers. Yet one can take a trip to Europe and see the ridiculousness of this, in every tiny balcony life springs eternal in every color and fragrance. Little old ladies walk over to their window to pluck fresh rosemary, or a lemon.

We are becoming so far removed from the earth that most kids have never experienced gardening/planting and growing. Plants can bloom from anywhere, so we see from truck farms crossing the US to educate kids on how their food is grown, and how you can grow anywhere, even from the back of a truck.(


So perhaps now is the time to consider bringing a little green into your life, a live flower here, a bush of mint and cilantro there, maybe even a dwarf lemon tree to really make you feel you're living the life.

I have promised myself for a YEAR that I would get two things: a herb garden, and a few plumeria plants. A year later, I finally sucked it up and started both and added succulents (near impossible to kill desert flowers) ,and jasmine. I made two trips to the nursery at the Home Depot, a gardening guide for the hip and young called "You Grow Girl", (check out and a small balcony that finally is getting some love. Cilantro for my eggs, rosemary and thyme for rack of lamb, mint for my tea and rice, how divine! Even my little Buddha sits outside, contemplating the universe underneath his plumeria tree.