For many, gardening is all about the escape. Even though I still work in it, it is what you create that gives you the freedom. So for this post I thought I'd starting at the roots, well actual the house I live in and the garden around it. Its the perfect way to chronicle my adventures in tropical gardening and the challenges I face as the seasons change.
Here on Nevis, houses don't have numbers, but are given names instead. My little slice of paradise is aptly called Genesis. I'm pretty sure it wasn't to honor the pop giants of the 80's and 90's, but probably to honor the biblical term for 'the beginning'. Its better to think of a place in a more noble manner than to picture a little balding man singing 'I can't dance'!
Genesis is your typical caribbean home. Solidly constructed in concrete with a metal roof and water catchment cisterns under the floors. Built to withstand hurricanes its a doomsday preppers dream come true! Even the big bad wolf could blow this house down.
|Adonidia merrillii, Manila palms outside the front door|
The other dream come true mainly for my daughter, is that its painted Barbie pink, a common color of caribbean dwellings. Apart from constantly craving cotton candy, I feel like were living in a dolls house. We're located about 700 ft up on the slopes of the extinct volcano that forms the center of Nevis. The views across to St Kitts are amazing and the breeze is somewhat constant, but you need to have the stamina of a mountain goat to mow the lawn!
|Flamboyant tree, Delonix regia|
|Bismarckia nobilis, Bismarck Palm|
One difference you soon learn in the tropic is that there are just two seasons, the wet and dry! Gone are the four season gardens I have used to for a while. I had always considered winter as a curse but in reality its a luxury. The gardens here never sleep, they just slow down when it gets dry. That means that all the problems associated with gardening, pest and disease and the like stay as a constant issue.
|African Tulip Tree, Spathodea campanulata|
In my next post, I'll introduce you to the rest of the island. Although we're pretty much a small circular island that shows up on many maps as a small dot, it a diverse rock with many different environments. I hope that many who read my blog before will continue to do so even though its a departure from the cold tolerant gardens of the north. One thing I've learnt since coming here is that its never dull and there's always a story to tell.
So until next time, garden on!