Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Hanging Gardens

Stokes Aster
Stokes Aster - recent addition (more on this in next)

When we moved, I had to leave behind my rooftop garden with most of its plants, flowers and all the birds, butterflies and other little critters.
Sad though it was, its been 2 months since the move and the lazy gardener is now officially back.

My problem ofcourse was not unique. In the region of Iraq, in 600BC (then called Babylon), queen Amytis was going through a similar problem. She missed her trees, flowers and gardens. Her better half King Nebuchadnezzar II found a solution by creating for her the hanging gardens of Babylon.

Faced with moping queen Rohini, king Keshav too applied his mind and came up with a simple solution for a 9th floor garden. Combining a need for security from monkeys(will discuss this in another post), saving floor real-estate and aesthetics.

Hanging Gardens
Our version of the Hanging Gardens :)

While moving, I took with me a baby chrysanthemum, my blue veronica, mexican heather baby plants and oregano. The black tulsi and the kadipatta did not survive the move. I also took a small cutting of a baby sun rose that was growing in our old building.

Im happy to inform that all are well and growing quite happily. I have also acquired a few more recently, here is the list:

1. Rain lily (White)
2. Tulsi (Green) my mom took a black one before we moved out.
3. White Alder
4. Stokes Aster (lavendar)
5. Star Cluster (Red)
6. Moss Rose ( really large variety - dark pink )
7. Portulaca Yellow and Pink
8. Chrysanthemum (Pink)
9. Rose (Red)
10. Song of India
11. Asparagus Foxtail fern

My parents just got back from a trip to Katpady (they were there for the Rath Festival).

Imagine their surprise when they see that the backyard of the house has been colonized by passion flower vines! I asked Mum to get me a cutting. I potted it this morning, and its blooming! ( Yes, I feel like shouting from the roof tops - but I cant obviously.. so I Twittered instead )

Passion Flower
when you wonder if there is a god, just look at this!

Urban gardening is an art and it comes with its own problems and advantages. This is my first experience with container gardening and I have a lot of new plants too, some that I'd never even seen or heard of. I will share my learnings in subsequent posts. Wish me luck!


Sriram said...

beautiful pictures and a lovely idea as well. the passion flower looks out of the world

Sandeep CA said...

good idea for a home garden..n beautiful pictures..RK i must tell u this seeing ur pics n posts i'm envy of u as to how u could find so much time n be so enthu in life..i'm trying to be like u..

Unknown said...

@Sriram: Thanks! Im a big fan of it. I had first seen it in Valley school, its quite a beauty. I hope the cutting I have takes root successfully and that the monkeys leave it alone. :)

Unknown said...

@Sandeep: Thanks! I find no time - believe me... Given enough time I would have made a paradise out of the balcony. :) Currently the monkeys are keeping me from getting very adventurous.. I had planned lot of creepers...

Anonymous said...

Hi Rohini
We have started a community service newsletter called GullyGullyIndia (GGI) in north Bangalore(Between Hebbal and Jakkur) which among many informative sections also contains a section on Travel wherein we talk about nearby getaways from Bangalore.
In our second edition that's due on Feb 28, our Travel section talks about T G Halli. Since the literature talks about the place as a Birding location, if you permit, we would like to include one of your Photograph of an Egret taking flight at T G Halli in our section. Kindly let us know, You could contact me at if you have any questions.


Anonymous said...


Arun said...

Hi Rohini,
I just stepped into your blog through a search on google about birds..and found quite a number of interesting facts. I love shooting flowers the most and trying to give a shot with birds. I don't have a blog yet, but you can visit my page at (still in construction!! :( )
I was planning to head out to Ranganathitu bird santuary this weekend, but it seems to be that its not the right just wanted to know if you do have any other place in mind for a day trip?
Let me know..


Unknown said...

Thanks for your visit! Ranganthittu has more than just migratory birds, if you want to see the smaller birds like sun birds, munias, kingfishers, wagtails you can still make a trip. Avoid Sundays or go early (earlier the better)
The gardens are extensive, dont miss the little pond with the benches.
You can also try Karanji Lake, if you are willing to go as far as mysore.

For something closer to the city, you can try Hebbal Lake, Madivala Lake (even lalbagh has a lot of birds).
There are some more places on the right side index like TGHalli, Manchinbele (my fav) - these are a little further away and involve some real bad roads.

Hope this helps!

Arun said...

Roshini...thanks for the tip.
Karanji seems to be a good bet as well. Will update you about my experiences once I am back.. :)

Rashmi said...

i really liked it

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