This one's for green thumbs

 A short documentary film called Choking Transition made by some students of film making proved to be a rude awakener as it showed how children of the next generation would resort to using only black colour to represent a landscape because they would not need any other colours of nature.

We can do our bit to erase the doom, by using up the tiniest bit of land around our homes and turn into a productive green patch. A garden need not necessarily translate into a vast spacious well pruned selection of plants in front of your homes.
A green patch around one’s home can be a source of endless joy if you plan carefully. It is important to prepare the soil before one commences gardening. First wet the place thoroughly and turn the soil over with a hoe and scatter sand and urea over the land. You could shape small bunds with your hands which will serve as borders and prevent water from seeping outside the periphery. It is important to avoid placing bricks or stones as border because they will eventually turn out to be shelters of termites which will feast on the roots of your plants.

Though a lot of people enthusiastically set out to test their green thumb they sooner or later give up the enterprise because they find gardening exacting. Hence it is important to select plants that have a longer life and those that don’t require much attention.

Flower garden
If you have a strip of land along the compound it is ideal to grow jasmines or night queens. They are tropical creepers which grow in profusion once they gather roots.
Hibiscus, roses of several hues can also spruce up your garden. There are several varieties of these local flowers used for worship and which flourish locally. Scout for the ones you care for and cut off a fairly thick but green stem measuring not more than a foot and place it in water for a couple of days to keep them alive.

Sometimes these stems sprout a small shoot, a sure sign that they will survive. Once you see the sign of life in them, plant them in the soil, in a slightly oblique manner so that a larger part of the stem is embedded in the soil. Make sure you water the spot every single day till they form their own roots for the next 45 days.
It is advisable to avoid pruning because pruned plants have a tendency to branch out and it may not be a welcome idea in the little space that you have. Creepers can be trained along the compound wall or led up to the parapet wall of your terrace. Roses, hibiscuses and other shrubbery can be encouraged to grow straight and tall by avoiding pruning them for at least the next two years. These plants flower almost right round the year and need very little care.

If you are a person who cares for shorter flowering plants to deck the frontal area of your home, your best bet will be to opt for bulbous root based plants. Sprouted turmeric, ginger, zerberas, cannas, dragon lilies, land lilies and hundreds of similar plants grow on bulbous roots. They regenerate after the flowering season without expecting much from you.

You could supplement the use of fertilisers by watering the plants with the water that you have used to wash your rice or vegetables or the water used to mop the floor or rinse the clothes. Make sure that you give away or pot the superfluous stalks that you cut away so that they can make another garden greener.

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