BENGALURU: Kavita Pishay moved to Bengaluru in 1986 after marriage and later shifted her house from Ulsoor to Indiranagar over 15 years back. At that time, the space opposite their home was quite literally a forest. “A farmer used to grow fresh greens like celery, parsley etc. The road was also lined with eucalyptus trees. Over time, this green cover depleted due to urbanisation. My children also grew up and became busy with college and then work,” says Pishay, adding that this was when she had the time to invest in gardening. “I had always dreamt of having a flower garden and also grow my own vegetables. So I decided to get into it. Over time, I went from growing plants, to flowers, vegetables and also fruits,” she says.
At any point of time, her garden is seen bearing over 15 different varieties of plants and flowers. “On good days, we can add vegetables to this list,” 56-year-old Pishay says. She grows plants on her terrace, courtyard and different floors, and waters them every alternate day in the winter and every day during summer. She usually spends late mornings to early afternoons tending to the garden. From June to January, Pishay grows vegetables like carrots, chillies, tomatoes, spinach, methi, beans, cherry tomatoes, radish, gourds, cabbage and others.
“I also have bougainvillea, orchids, the rare Brahma kamal, Shankapushpi, Hibiscus, Anthoriums, roses and more. Among plants, my garden has bamboo, ficus, croton, aloe vera, different types of cactus, palms, etc. Pomegranate, papaya and lime also grow seasonally,” she says, adding that flowers and plants grow throughout the year.
Pishay grows these out of passion and sends them to friends and relatives. “When we harvest the crop, I usually get a minimum of four kg of all vegetables combined. What do I do with so much? Thus, I distribute them generously,” she adds.
Snakes, pelicans and different varieties of butterflies are regular visitors to her garden. “We have even had a kingfisher visit us. A lot of birds build nests and lay their eggs. In fact, we used to have nature photographers come and take pictures here,” Pishay says. Of course, cows come to feed on the greens too.
Considering lack of space in a city like Bengaluru, Pishay advises fellow gardeners to consider the terrace and balcony as they are great options to spread some greenery around.
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