26 April 2011


My father passed away on 6 April and, while we bade him farewell at the time, it is now time to bid farewell to the house in which he and my mother lived for the past 23 years. It is a farmhous in rural Andhra Pradesh and, knowing my mother couldn't live there alone, he left it to the Little Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy requesting that they use it as a home for the poor. The Sisters will take it over on 30 April. We were all for this because it gave him a lot of peace to know that the house he built would be of help to poor people for generations to come.

This post is dedicated to the farmhouse garden. We spent many hours there and I will remember the early morning walks among the lime and mango trees; the early evening hours on the lawn listening to the calls of the beecatchers, crow pheasant, kingfishers, egrets and other birds as they visited the pond, shrubs and trees; and the late evening walks along the drive way, inhaling the fragrance of frangipani.

04 April 2011

Plant rescue

For various reasons, I haven't made much headway with populating my balconies with plants. Right now the more urgent task is resucitating plants brought over from the other flat.

Without me there to supervise him, Nagaraj is doing even less than before, if that's possible. On a recent tour of the garden, I found a monstera in a terrible condition, hidden away in a corner among other plants. I've brought it to Norris Road and am now going to stabilise it, and then feed and nurture it back to health.

It looks almost a goner but on the top right there's a tiny, almost completely white leaf, curled onto itself so it looks even smaller. This augurs well for resucitation. Auguries for Nagaraj are not so good.

The tomato plant I brought over earlier had started flowering, but the flowers died without turning into fruit. I think the problem was irregular watering in some really hot weather. April is the hottest month in Bangalore. I'm now watering regularly and misting the plant (and all the others too) twice a day with just water.  There are some healthy looking flowers now; keeping my fingers crossed. Sorry about the out-of-focus photos.

I've also got some cherry tomato and brinjal seedlings from geekgardener and will post about them when they're transplanted. It was wonderful to see gg's terrace garden. Among the delights were strawberry plants, with jewel-red strawberries pushing free from the leaves, a bhut jolakia in full form with lots of red and some green chilis, and a bird's eye chili plant, dotted with hundreds of tiny red chilis--a real treat for the eyes. gg is also nurturing pink giant and maroon tomatoes into seedlings; can't wait to get my hands on some.