Being in a new place the idea of visiting a nursery was so tempting! We headed off to a place that my sister often passes by, on the way to her friend's house. The sight of the adeniums was breath-taking! There were hundreds of them lining the terrace in colours to die for! Such subtle variations and so beautiful too!
Rajendra Kumar the man behind it all! A storehouse of information on all things botanical. It was a pleasure meeting him and talking to him. When we got there, he was busy working in the garden and also dealing with customers who were buying in bulk. I did buy about seven varieties but he charged me for only about three of them!! Such a kind gesture because I'm from the other extreme of the country!
Checking out his site on the web later, I learnt that PLR Gardens ( that name was on his card) is a formidable presence in Chennai and in the state of Tamil Nadu.
David admiring some of the plants at the nursery.
As you can see from most of the photos the 'soil' looks different. It's actually coco-dust, a by-product of the coir industry. The outermost layer of the coconut is processed for the extraction of fibre which is used in making rugs, rope, brushes and upholstery stuffing. Between these fibres is the corky substance known as Coir pith or Coir dust. This is fast becoming a hydroponic growing medium. Some of the advantages of using coco-dust are--- High water-holding capacity Healthy root growth Larger roots and blooms Doesn't smell, is bio-degradable and is easily incorporated into soil The idea of using this by-product originated in the Far East and made its way to the Netherlands and Canada. Some websites have mentioned cocodust as a replacement (in the US) for rockwool in hydroponic rose production. Some of the garden features that I liked. I particularly like the small but attractive water feature. I did see a solitary water lily but forgot to take a close shot. New place, new plants....the mind goes haywire!!
Glory be to God for dappled things- For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow; For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim; Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches' wings; Landscape plotted and pieced--fold, fallow, and plough; And all trades, their gear and tackle and trim. All things counter, original, spare, strange; Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?) With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim; He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change: Praise him. Gerard Manley Hopkins
The first flowering shrub I planted on our land
Every flower is a soul blooming in Nature.-Gerard De Nerval
Shall I not have intelligence with the earth? Am I not partly leaves and vegetable mould myself? -Henry David Thoreau