Wednesday, May 5, 2010

How Does Your Garden Grow?

The temps are still a little cool at times, but Spring is in the garden, if not always in the air. The roses are flowering like mad, the daisies are blooming by the hundreds (not sure what they are actually, but they look like daisies), the ivy has greened up again, and the bougainvilleas are a mass of lovely fuchsia. The almond tree is covered in green nuts – which are a local treat, I never knew they could be eaten green! – and there’s another fruit tree with small green fruits, possibly an apricot, but I am not sure. I am truly thrilled to live in a place with a well-cared for established garden! What luck!

Most of the planters are quite full, and we may not add to them. Instead, I may be investing in some nice pots and planters as we definitely have room for them on the patios. We also have a built-in planter box on the balcony that the kids and I have turned into a little gardening project. We started out with a weedy mess that hadn’t been cared for in forever.

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We started it, but the gardener helped finish clearing it out – it was tough!

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We divided it into sections, and I turned the kids loose with seeds. Brian has the closest section, Honor the middle, and they let me have the bit on the end under the grape vine. Goodness knows what will come up. Zinnias, marigolds, radishes, parsley, sweet peas… I just let them do whatever they wanted. No telling what the soil will be good for. I’m hoping to have this random garden improve the soil some this year, and next year we’ll mix in more dirt and compost, and might try being more organized.

Here are some photos of the flowers in the back garden.

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We love this view from our small sitting room and kitchen, and as it warms up, we are spending more time out on the patio.

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There are 13 or 14 well-established rose bushes in the garden which bloom furiously – and these aren’t the boring unscented hybrids, they each have a lovely perfume. 

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The daisy bushes, or whatever they are, are bright and cheerful.

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Our new herbs in boxes. We’ve got mint (na’na’), oregano (zatar), and something that is either marjoram or thyme.

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I love the planter boxes on the wall, and the green ivy! The greenery and geraniums are hardy, and do not need much water. Bougainvillea is very tough too. Good for the summers here, when water is in scarce supply.

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16 comments:

Shannon said...

Oh My! Do all the houses in Amman have such nice gardens? I am so excited to have a garden and a yard again when we get to Malawi. 2 tours in apartments or townhouses and I am ready to go drink my morning coffee on the porch. I hope ours looks half as nice as yours!

Connie said...

Shannon - I really do not know. I have seen another house with a nice backyard and patio, but most people I know live upstairs. I assume that ours is average size for a ground floor, but I've been told the larger homes are not ground floor, so people with bigger families, will not likely get a garden. I haven't really got a good feel for what is 'average' here. I'm just tickled to have the plants and flowers, and yes, I do agree, coffee (or dinner) on the patio! I can't wait to hear of your new place in Malawi :)

Donna said...

Love the patio. We used to have those same daisies all over in Los Angeles. I love those! Are planters easy to find there, or do people bring them? (I can get great cheap ceramic pots in Beijing, but I don't know if they'll survive the journey.)

A Daring Adventure said...

Holy COW, Connie! Those pictures are gorgeous!

What a beautiful back area!

Connie said...

Donna - it's about a 30-min drive from Amman to Jerash, and all the way along the road are stands selling all sorts of clay pots and plants. I have not yet stopped to look at them, but some are simple, some are shaped, carved and decorated. I have a feeling that the expense will be the potting soil! At least I have found a place to get some.

Connie said...

Daring - this is payback for 5 years in a 3rd floor apt. in Cairo! :D

Connie said...

ps to Donna - Our gardener also took me to a garden shop in town and they carried good quality plastic planters of various shapes and sizes, with leak-proof bases, and other gardening supplies. More expensive and less selection than say, Home Depot(!), but very nice anyway.

Bfiles said...

how glorious!!!!!! I just loved seeing these photos. thanks!

Christine said...

Lovely garden! Our flowers are popping up here and there.... I love Spring.

Anonymous said...

Does Mama Kitty still live in your garden?
JEB
Atlanta, GA
USA

Connie said...

Bfiles and Christine - these photos were just too sunny and springlike to keep to myself :) Glad you liked them!

JEB - We see mamma kitty around. Not sure where she actually lives now, but she visits our garden with several other cats from the local feral colony and peeks in the windows. When she'd first discovered the kittens were inside, she'd meow for them, but the kittens had pretty much forgotten her. I'd talk to her through the windows and she'd sit and listen calmly, and eventually quiet. She seems as clever as her babies. She looks like Ninja, but with slightly longer fur. I'm hoping at least one our our cats gets her green eyes, it looks like Ninja might. :)

Crystal said...

Beautiful patio and garden! I wish we could have more greenery in Kuwait. It is so dry here, it's hard to keep anything alive. I hope you are enjoying your spring~

Connie said...

I was surprised to find so much greenery. Compared to Cairo, it is browner, but still.. there are TREES all over. Love it! I think the elevation really helps. There's not much water, but it stays much cooler, so I guess the ground/plants can hold the moisture easier, and the winter rains were something to experience! The combination seems to work.

Jill said...

Oh your garden is gorgeous... and to be able to use is it is fantastic!!!

Jen said...

Beautiful garden! With our upcoming move, we probably won't get to do much this year...love the kids garden, hope you will update with pics along the way?

Connie said...

Jill - It is a blessing! We've wanted this for some time now :)

Jen - It is hard to jump right in to a new garden, esp. if you don't have tools or know where to buy them! :D I will post updates as things grow. We've already got sprouts, so I ought to go take some photos today.