QUOTE OF THE MONTH :

Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant. ~Robert Louis Stevenson

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Wednesday, 8 June 2016

The Grapevine

It has been quite a long time since I have written here. The last time, it was some juicy strawberries, and this time around, I have some grapes to share here. It has always been a pleasure to watch plants, that you sow seeds of or get small seedlings of, from a plants nurseries, care for, and watch them grow over the time. It is a sense of absolute happiness when these plants that you've so long cared for, blooms and a much better feeling when it bears fruits, ones which you can consume.
Talking about the grapevine, this has been with me for around four years now. It bore a good harvest the first year I got this plant. The next year, because of some unforeseen circumstances, the plant did not get a chance to bear fruits, even after it bore good enough inflorescences. The next year, that is, the last year, the plant surprisingly gave a miss to the inflorescences and thus no grapes, last year as well. This time around, however, I got lucky, and a few bunches of grapes showed up.



I had no option, but to wait - this is one thing nature makes you learn - WAIT! Whether you like it or not, the nature has her own way, and you can't really force her to work according to your wishes. So, I waited and waited and waited. For the inflorescences to show me small grapes, for the small grapes to grow bigger and bigger, and then for these big grapes to ripen. Well, it happened, but not as I had thought. The grapes grew, but didn't reach a size they already did, the first time the vine bore fruits. Though, this is not supposedly a variety with fruits of a good size, but, this year's yield just broke another expectation. Just a few bunches, and those too having tiny grapes, each of them filled with two to four seeds, so what have I got? I am still thinking over that. However, there's one consolation - the winged guests that visit my rooftop certainly like what's on offer, and they, probably never have any expectations, and thus, are happy with whatever is being offered. The birds do like poking the grapes, drinking all the juice with their beaks, and leave alone the seeds, right there, for me. :P







Hopefully, next year, I will have a better harvest that this year, and though, I do leave some of the harvest for the winged guests, I too want to taste the feeling of having your own harvest, right from your rooftop garden. There's some speculations of the monsoon arriving soon. And until it arrives, there's going to be a lean time, here, as nothing shows up in the scorching heat. The really hardy plants like the all season vincas - white and the pink ones are just the ones that bloom these days, and so is the arabian jasmine, that works wonders in the evenings with the superb fragrance. Hopefully, by the time the monsoon arrives, I will have better stories to share with you all, here. And since this time, I am expecting the tuberoses to give me a better yield, along with the new variety I introduced earlier this year, I can just hope to give you exciting food for thought here, in the coming weeks. Till then, HAPPY GARDENING!

Sunday, 15 May 2016

Juicy Strawberries

As promised in the last post, here I am with a blogpost on the strawberries I grew some time back. Though, as I already told you guys, the harvest was not a really great one, and the taste too appeared somewhat different from the strawberries I've had, with my harvest not being as sweet, and more of having a sour taste, even though it appeared to be blood red, and seemed ripe. Though this was my second attempt at growing strawberries in pots, which, going by numerous pictures in various gardening groups on facebook appeared to be pretty easy task. Thus, I placed an order for some strawberry seeds from eBay, and sowed them. What happened after that was quite unexpected. There was no germination at all, leave alone having those juicy red strawberries right from my own garden.
The second time, I happened to stumble upon these at a plants seller around my office where I used to frequent for my gardening supplies, as this one was quite equipped with almost everything I could ever need. And as soon as I saw these saplings, I knew these were strawberries, and bought some saplings home. Here I did my first mistakes planting strawberries in pots. The small pot I used for planting the saplings, thinking the physical characteristics of the plant will not need a big container, and lot of space too will not be required. But was I wrong? Yes I was. Though, the plant is small, the four saplings that I placed in the small pot became quite densely packed and this, I believe negatively affected the growth of them all. Apart from this, a fifth sapling that I planted in a bigger pot, alone, too didn't grow very well.

Strawberry saplings planted in grow bag
Strawberry saplings, re-planted in the grow bag
There's finally the blooms in the strawberry plants
Blooms in the strawberry plants
A lesson well learnt, I guess. This I believe will be of great help when I go in doing this the third time, as I will be better prepared about the space requirements, sowing time, and other necessary information about its lifeline, and other important things that will be crucial for a better strawberry harvest the next time I set upon to grow these in my rooftop garden.

There's finally the blooms in the strawberry plants
Blooms in the strawberry plants
For now, I will leave you with some remnants of the entire adventure that unfolded slowly over four-five months, and one that is still waiting to unfold itself completely with the last remaining two plants, two of the other three being dead after bearing some fruits, and a third one dying probably of loneliness of not being planted with one of its kind, though the expansive real estate it had got should ideally have it growing better than the rest.

Is that a tiny strawberry? Yes it is.
A tiny strawberry.
It's started to ripen.
There's finally a hint of red  the strawberries
It's started to ripen.
There's finally a hint of red  the strawberries
Ah! The final crop. Delicious, juicy, red strawberries, fresh from your own garden.
Ah! The final crop. Delicious, juicy, red strawberries, fresh from your own garden.
Huh! Strawberries are finally done! What next? Oh, didn't I tell you? There are grapes too, a few bunches, growing slowly, for some time now, with time that would force me to eagerly wait for a minimum of a month before I could relish those sweet-sour black round grapes, fresh from my garden. Who needs an orchard then? More on grapes, gerberas, moss roses and the wonderful crop of tuberoses, of which I have introduced a new variety, this year in my garden, and after a complete re-plantation of the previously planted bulbs, that is doing exceptionally well, in the bag, I replanted them this year, in the upcoming blogposts, in the coming weeks. Till then HAPPY GARDENING!

Sunday, 24 April 2016

Wonderful Ghazanias

Writing here after a really long time. A month is no less time to have an update on your blog, especially, when you have so much going on in your life. By life, I mean, the lives in my terrace garden at my house. The peak time for the beautiful blooms, for the year is over here, and right now, we, here, are reeling under the scorching summer heat that is crossing 40 degrees. Now, there is much more care needed by the plants, in terms of watering as we are forced to water them three times a day, which, is quite important to save the plants who have nowhere to go, to save themselves from this extreme heat.
Back to business, the past couple of months showed me some of the most beautiful blooms I could've had in my garden, and while most of these blooms I have already shared with you all, there were still some left that I should've put up here, but because of the other works, I couldn't. By other works, I mean something else, which took up all my free time, in which I compose and put up these blogposts. Sure, I will also let you know what other work I was busy in, as a large part of it is now complete, and just a small part is now left. Though, this (other work) has nothing to do with the niche of this blog, still, I will do a special post for this. Okay, getting back, I was talking about the beautiful plants which bloomed, and while most of those I have already shared, the few left were the ghazanias, gerberas, nasturtiums (which I had saved seeds from the last year, to get the plants, again, this year), and the dog flower. There were balsams too, but unfortunately, they didn't bloom as beautifully, because I lost three of the six saplings I had brought in, because of a strng gust of wind that resulted in the pot containing the balsam saplings, fall down two storeys, into the neighbout's empty space, right at a time when they had started to bloom.
For today, I have some beautiful ghazania blooms to share with you all. Nothing much, but still, the bright colours, along with the long bloom duration, makes these winter plants, an absolute delight to watch in your winter garden. While there are numerous colours these beauties are available in, for me, there were just three colours, from the six saplings I had brought in, early in the winter season, last year.
First, there were the buds, which, definitely left me really excited, for this was the first time these were blooming and thus, I had really no idea about the colours I would be getting.

A Ghazania bud
A Ghazania bud
Eventually, these buds bloomed into some beautiful ghazania blooms.

A ghazania bud, opening up
Another ghazania bud, opening up
A ghazania bud, opening up
Another ghazania bud, opening up
And then, there were the blooms, really beautiful ones, and ones that would last for four to five days, opening up and closing, daily, to bloom again, in the sun.

A ghazania bloom, yellow.
A ghazania bloom, orange.
A ghazania bloom, orange.
A ghazania bloom, orange.
The ghazania plants are still blooming, however, the bloom numbers have fallen down drastically, and the flower size too has fallen down considerably, because, it's off season! However, these will bloom again, in the next winter, and will make me extremely happy.
Coming p in the upcoming posts, the strawberries that I grew in my garden, though, the harvest was not a bumper one, for a starter, it was a delightful experience. Also, my grape vine, has finally bore fruits, this year, after a gap of two years, and now there are a few small bunches of grapes hanging out there. This and a few more in the upcoming posts, in the weeks to come. Till then, HAPPY GARDENING!

Monday, 21 March 2016

Purple Petunias

Last few days have been quite tedious for me. This has a lot to do with my work responsibilities and a few other things beyond my work responsibilities, so much so that I couldn't even find an hour or so in each week to sit back and work on a few updates, about my adventures in my rooftop garden, which, for the past couple of months has been quite a happening place with the winter beauties of Chrysanthemums blooming in the middle of the month of November and by the end of its month long blooming period, a number of other winter plants started blooming. I have been putting updates here and the last one I posted was around the dozen of varieties and colours and patterns of phloxes, that has been blooming. What I missed out posting here in the period I was missing were the numerous blooms of Petunias, the pink Dahlia plant from last year too bloomed within this period. One of the gerberas, also bloomed, though, not an exciting colour as this was a dull light yellowish, but then, afterall, it's a gerbera bloom, and it does matter. The strawberries too, happened to bear a few fruits in one of the four plants. Apart from that, the Ghazanias, I had got early in the month of November too have started blooming lately.
So, this time around, lets just take a stroll down the garden taking a look at the beautiful and vibrant Petunia blooms, which, I didn't have too many plants of, but still, the numbers of blooms did make up for the lack of more colours and varieties.

Metro Greens: Petunias
Beautiful blooms of Petunias
Metro Greens: Petunias
Beautiful blooms of Petunias
Metro Greens: Petunias
Beautiful bloom of Petunias
Metro Greens: Petunias
A Petunia seed pod, saving for the future
The beautiful blooms, with their bright and eye catching pink flowers with white borders were a delight to watch. Apparently, I did not get to see the other stunning colours and patterns of petunias, this year. I as visible in the above picture, I will be saving the seeds to sow them, again, next year, and will definitely bring in more plants, hopefully in more colours, and patterns, to get a better view on my terrace garden, next year.
Upcoming, in the next week will be the small, but, fulfilling strawberry yield from the garden's single strawberry plant, which, after bearing some fruits, seems to have bid goodbye to this material world.  In the coming weeks, I will be having some beautiful ghazania blooms as well as the numerous blooms of red roses which are in their full display, these days, and the grape inflorescences too, lined up. I will be back, with updates, till then, HAPPY GARDENING!