No matter if the space you have at home is big or small, Lockdown is the perfect time to cultivate your garden

“Gardening is about enjoying the smell of things growing in the soil, getting dirty without feeling guilty, and generally taking time to soak up a little peace and serenity.” ~ Lindley Karstens

Do you wish to grow your own flowering plants🌸🌹🌺 or vegetables🥔🍅🌶 , but many times have backed out due to the limited space or insufficient knowledge? 🌱Gardening has always been recognized as a recreational activity that people of any age group enjoy and love to indulge in. As the coronavirus pandemic, has caused everyone to be self- quarantined at home; it’s the best time now to cultivate a small garden, when ample time is in your hands. This can be a positive family-inclusive activity and a perfect at-home project to adopt. As some studies and research suggest that ‘Home gardening’ is going to GROW eventually… Thus, organically growing your own 🍒🍓fruits & vegetables will make one less dependent upon external sources especially during the time of crisis.

Online searches for ‘how to grow’, ‘how to plant’ and ‘tips on gardening’ have increased by more than 5,000 per cent since the beginning of March 2020 (as covered in an article in Telegraph)

I’ve always admired others garden and felt that Gardening is all about planting, sunlight, watering, soil, fertilizer, harvesting, but it’s much more than these …. quite interesting that one can make this a lifetime passion. There is nothing more comforting than planting a seed, nurturing it and watch it grow.  Gardening also provides aerobic and muscle-building exercise.

One hour of weeding, trimming and raking can burn 300 calories, according to a fact sheet from Texas A&M University Agrilife Extension, based in College Station, Texas.

Health experts also motivate senior citizens to garden as it’s a good form of exercise and relaxes their mind. Not only adults; Gardening is crucial for children as well, as it provides hands-on activities enhancing their learning skills, encourages kids to get practical knowledge and gain life-skills.

Once you are steady with your basic learning about gardening one can explore ‘ Hydroponics’ which is essential in today’s time.

It’s said that hydroponic gardening is the future of gardening and farming, i.e. growing plants without soil. There are two methods of hydroponic gardening: Either roots are submerged directly in nutrient-enriched water, or the plant is grown in a container filled with a soilless mixture of perlite, sand and/or coconut fiber. To begin with, you will need a hydroponics system, hydroponic nutrients, an inert hydroponics medium which you can easily order it on Amazon.

So, if you are a beginner, you must be thinking, “How should you start your gardening journey? What to plant now? How to maintain them? …Right?

Well, I met these two lovely ladies, they are a passionate garden lover, enthusiastic and multi-talented in many fields. I was mesmerized to see their gardens, the variety of home plants and the way they beautifully nurture it. Here are some useful insights and tips to follow to create your own ‘Garden World’ especially during the lockdown.

SHYAMALA NAWAB

Lives in Bangalore. She is passionate about everything…People; Books; Movies (a review writer); Travel; Food and her sweet home.

Shyamala believes that “A little love goes a long way” hence speaking to your plants as you water them daily can help them really grow well. If you have space for a large/small garden or even a balcony for potted plants, then you are blessed!”

  1. To begin, start with a simple pothos (money plant) or succulent (Jade) in a small cup or bottle. 
  2. Once a week, trimming the dead leaves & twigs is important while once a month, adding some organic fertilizer (mix of essential nutrients) shall keep plants & veggies fresh and healthy.
  3. For soil compaction, loosening the topsoil with a fork will help your plants grow well.
  4. A place looks more enhanced and appealing when ‘plants in water’ (Indoor Water Plant). I have filled every spare space at home with bottles, cups, jars…even tea light holders.
  5. To make the place look attractive one can also add small figures, string up lights & use chimes, make wind flowers, bees & butterflies on sticks.
  6. ‘Google Lens’ & ‘PlantSnap’ are good apps to explore which are a high-tech, comprehensive and accurate plant identification apps. 
  7. Involve kids and make them responsible for the plants. Let them water the plants daily and use a ruler to measure the plant growth every week. Give the child few beans, coriander or fenugreek seeds to plant in mud ….they will see sprouts & saplings grow to be plants that can be used in fresh salads. 
  8. Just a suggestion- Do not use soap to clean your gardening containers instead rinse with plain water.

Enisha Oberoi

Lives in Mumbai. MA in fine arts … A painting professional artist and has her own art studio.

Enisha says, “Being a painting artist, my strongest belief is that gardening is an art that uses flowers and plants as paint while the soil and sky as it’s canvas. We might think that we are nurturing our garden, but often it’s them who nurture us back. This activity just keeps me occupied and positive throughout:)”

While the weather is nice and you have got ample time on your hands, pick up ideas that suit you well with the space you have at home. Spring is here and the sun is shining bright… bring good positive vibes during this unprecedented time as it’s the perfect opportunity to do gardening. Once you develop a passion in this field, it remains a hobby for a lifetime. 

  • A house with enough sunlight is best for the plants, but in case they show a sign of sunburn do switch its place. Also rotating the position of the pots will help the plant to grow evenly on all the sides.
  • Water the plants as per its requirement. Some like humidity so you can mist on the top and underneath the leaves. Plants can be revived from less water, but if over-watered then there are chances for the plant to thin out and would develop wilted, light green or yellow leaves.
  • If you feel the growth of a plant is stunted, repotting it in another pot (preferably a size bigger) will give the plant a larger growing space. 
  • Don’t over feed the plants-as it may harm them.
  • Trim your plants… pruning leggy stems will help the plant to grow into a fuller and in an even pattern. 
  • It is important to protect your plants from pests. You can make homemade compost and feed plants at regular intervals. What works well for me is tea leaves, banana peels and egg shells.
  • To protect your hands from the mess and irritation one can use a pair of gardening gloves as constant hand wash can leave our skin sensitive and prevent catching that moisture into our palms. Gloves are also essential for picking up small twigs, pinching soil and for getting a good grip on the gardening tools.
  • To create your own Kitchen garden, you can a grow herbs at home viz. mint, parsley, cilantro, thyme. They take as little as a week to grow. You can also cultivate your own salad indoor garden. 
  • For planting flowers and to make your garden look exciting you can start with seeds or pick transplants from neighboring houses…
  • To enhance your garden area, add a touch of color using cushions with a deck chair to soak the early morning sunlight.
  • I have also formed a WhatsApp Group for all the Plant Lovers, it’s named- Plant_Aholics where the group members share pictures of their beautiful blooming plants/gardens, we discuss, ask questions, share solutions, tips …. most importantly we share happiness …bringing positivity and a smile amongst each other.
  • Gardening with Children is fun as it’s a great way to teach environmental awareness as they explore nature at a young age. My daughter has developed a good interest in gardening, she also helps me in painting my flower pots:)

So, anyone can garden. Try different varieties and see what works best for both your space and taste buds. Most importantly – have fun, explore, make life colorful and relax.

Do share your ‘BEAUTIFUL GARDEN’ pictures in the below comment section, I shall include them in my next blogpost 😊

Let’s bring positivity and inspire plant lovers amidst this crisis and make the most of our garden during the quarantine!

-HAPPY PLANTING

2 comments

  1. Gardening ,plants ,bring one closer to mother nature…
    An excellent hobby too…
    What a thrill to watch ones plants grow n bear flowers or fruits ..

    Liked by 1 person

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