Friday, September 15, 2017

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day - September 2017

It is hard to believe that yet another month has passed - and I think the plants in my little balcony garden feel similarly, because there has not been much change since the last Bloom Day. For the most part, the same things are blooming now that were blooming a month ago. The one notable development is that my rice plant has begun heading. Now I just hope I can keep ants and birds off it long enough for the grains to ripen.

My tiny little mālatī (Aganosma heynei) has been flowering for weeks now

My one surviving African marigold (Tagetes erecta) has produced its first somewhat ragged bloom

The four o'clocks (Mirabilis jalapa) are all blooming now; I was hoping for some color variations or two-tones, but the magenta is lovely nonetheless

The caladium and betel pepper (Piper betle) seem happy

My banana plants have definitely put on heft

One of several fruits on my bitter gourd vines (Momordica charantia)

New panicles of rice

To see what is in bloom elsewhere, check out Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day at May Dreams Gardens!

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Lodi Garden Blooms

This morning I passed through Lodi Gardens, as I do quite often, and quite a few things were blooming just beautifully.

 The Tomb of Muhammad Shah Sayyid

One of many gardenias

Mountain or cassumunar ginger (Zingiber cassumunar) in the Herb Garden

One canna cultivar...

And another, with the Sheesh Gumbad mausoleum peeking out in the back...

... and yet another

A particularly red cultivar of Plumeria rubra - even the leaves have a reddish tint!

View across the lily pond

Some of the flowers of the bright pink Nymphaea rubra cultivar were absolutely massive

The purple and pale blue varieties were much more delicate but just as lovely

The highlight of this walk in the park were definitely the waterlilies. In part because they were absolutely glorious but also because they were somewhat unexpected. I have been stopping by the lily pond and two smaller pools in the park that also have a few waterlilies in them every once in while ever since I first got to Delhi in March; for most of that time the waterlilies have looked rather sad, with a few raggedy pads and only an occasional unimpressive flower. All the more remarkable then that now they make such a wonderful display.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day - August 2017

On a complete side note before we get to the flowers, today is also Independence Day here in India. My balcony garden here in Delhi does not have much new going on, in part due to a somewhat lackluster monsoon. Even with daily attentive watering, there is a notable explosion of growth and flowering within a couple of days after every good day of rain we get. Conversely, whenever it has not rained for a week many plants begin to notably decline. We are now in one of those dry spells, and with it has not only come drought but also temperatures rising from day to day. Even so, here are a few things that are blooming these days:

Double butterfly peas (Clitoria ternatea

Globe amaranth (Gomphrena globosa), very much the star of the show right now

A coleus (Solenostemon scutellarioides) grown from a wilted torn branch I found on the street one day

A new addition - the deliciously fragrant mālatī (Aganosma heynei), a native vine that is undeservedly rare in gardens

My two heirloom roses continue to bloom, though in the heat flowers rarely last more than a day, especially if it is sunny; this one seems to be a Bourbon of some kind, the other is 'Gruß an Teplitz'

Hopefully there will be more rain for us in the near future. Meanwhile, see what others have blooming today at May Dreams Gardens.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Indian Travels - Part I: Saheliyõ kī Bāṛī, Udaipur, Rajasthan

A high school friend was visiting the last two weeks, and we did a fair bit of domestic travel. Making our way down the western side of the country, we made stops in Udaipur, Mumbai, and Kochi. Of course saw much of garden interest; one of our first stops was the Saheliyõ kī Bāṛī or "Garden of the Maidens" in Udaipur. Located in the north of the city near the Fateh Sagar lake, this pleasure garden was created in the early 18th century by Maharana Sangram Singh for the women of his court. The garden is renowned particularly for its ornate fountains, including a pavilion in the middle of a bathing tank in an enclosed courtyard in the center of the garden which spouts sheets of water from its roof. This quirky feature is called Bādal Binā Barsāt, or "Monsoon Rain Without a Cloud". While we were, there, however, the actual monsoon was actually in full force, varying behind light drizzle and heavy downpours, which made this water-themed garden appear particularly lush and misty.

A palm-lined path

A lovely door that is probably one of the most photographed features of the garden, based on how often I have seen it on social media

One of hundreds exceptionally lush and sturdy balsam plants, most of which were just beginning to bloom

One of several ornate fountains

Purple globe amaranth (Gomphrena globosa) intermingling with Thunbergia grandiflora

 A waterlily pond with with an even more elaborate fountain and elephant statues spouting water from their trunks

The Bādal Binā Barsāt pavilion in its tank in the center of the garden

A lovely niche overgrown with bougainvillea in the main courtyard

Due to all the rain we did not spend as much time at this garden as we might have otherwise done, and even with the drizzle and downpours it was quite busy with visitors. It is lovely though, and quite special in its quirky playfulness.

Monday, July 17, 2017

About Town

Just a few pictures from some of my park and garden stomping grounds around town, the result of the most recent walks taken in spite of the sticky heat.

In the garden of the Tomb of Najaf Khan and his daughter Fatima

A close-up of some of those blanket flowers (Gaillardia aristata)

A sea of Madagascar periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus)

White crepe myrtles (Lagerstroemia indica) at the tomb

One of many varieties of Citrus in the tomb garden

View towards the Bara Gumbad or "Big Dome" in Lodi Gardens

A beautiful glazed tile jālī or screen at Lodi Gardens' glasshouse

A section of the historic Athpula bridge in Lodi Gardens

Lodi Gardens' fountains

Now I shall be off to exploring the city some more with one of my oldest friends finally here to visit... :)