I have finally gone through the hard drives and found the necessary photos for the big garden post.
This is what our house looked like on the day we moved in.
This is jumping forward a bit, to the second year we were in the house. This is looking out at the yard from the porch. I can tell it's the second year by the length of Leafy's dreadlocks and the small fence in the front of the yard. When we moved in there were no fences, but gradually, every year when we returned there were more fences, until the seven food stone and concrete fence that keeps us in now.
It started to feel ridiculous to have a fenced in piece of dirt, especially at a meditation center. Back when it was just a piece of the village it was one thing, but now that it was our "yard," well. Well.
So last year I came up with a big garden plan. It included grass. That meant that all the top soil needed to be removed and new soil put in. I drew a plan for a path and some spirals around coconut trees.
These lovely ladies from Karnataka worked on sifting the new soil and mixing it to fill it in. In their off time (a lot of off time, work in India requires a supervisor to encourage everyone to keep working, and I'm not so good at that) they played with YaYa's hair. She would run in and have her hair all up or braided.
They also helped her find tiny shells for her collection.
And this year, when we returned, we found this bit of loveliness.
This is looking out from the front porch. I love this little corner. And unwanted fences are certainly better with climbing flowers on them.
Don't let me forget about the beauty of brown stone and climbers.
Those palms are some of the greenest and easiest things to grow. The bougainvillea, also. Oh I love that color. I want a scarf in exactly that color.
The last plumeria flower until the next time it blooms. I need to get some cow urine to fight the fungus that wants to take this plant over.
No matter where I live, I want growing things around me. Here we fight fungus and ants as well as strange moths that burrow into the ground. (If fighting means occasionally putting neem onto the grass and sighing as I pull away at the grass they've eaten. I've given in a bit. Other than putting DEADLY CHEMICALS into the ground, it seems that my only option is to try a few natural things and then live with them. Jungle garden.)
And there's this guy. He likes to run into the spray of the hose while I'm watering. He's a general pest. An adorable one.
In the vegetable garden, the Bok Choy was really easy to grow. A lot of my vegetables disappeared when the ants carried the seeds away. But we got a lovely giant community salad out of it.
I will rewrite the parable of the seeds and include "some seeds fell in the jungle, and ants carried them away..."
I love that I'm making mistakes and learning. Plants are such beautiful object for meditation. The garden of the soul. It heals me, sitting and working with plants that are eaten or need water or trimming. All these lovely things that need a little help, some care and hydration and guidance.
Every. Single. Day. Just like me.