Friday, April 27, 2007

Puttering Around in My Chacala Garden

Chacala: My landlady came up to the house yesterday morning. She was on her way back from visiting a friend who is very ill, and who lives up the road from here. We talked a little about what a good present might be, for our mutual friend. It sounds like cash for medicine and water and so on is the best bet. I guess the average old people pension around here is somewhere between $600 and $1000 pesos. About $50/90US$. So money can get pretty tight if you are sick.

Anyway, she and I looked around at what I have been doing in her yard, and she picked out some baby plants to take down to the restaurant. She showed me the actual boundaries lines on each side of her property. Originally she told me the stone walls on either side were the actual property lines, but it turns out there is only about 12 feet on each side of the house. Instead of maybe 25 feet. Big difference. I am glad she told me sooner than later.
We walked around back and she pointed out a private place I could garden in pots. It’s about 20 by 15 feet. And surrounded by vegetation, with one cement block wall on the west side. I would have to garden in pots there. The ground seems to be solid rock. But there’s some shade in the morning from trees, and shade in the afternoon from the back wall of the bodega. I am sort of excited about that space because it’s shady. And it could be kind of private. I am picturing an arbor maybe, with vines. And a hammock. And pots. Maybe I will do some hypertufa style pots. I like the idea.

Things are growing well out front. I have four beds going, with another one started. I have to finish a bed on the rock wall, where I am going to plant bougainvillea.

Then I will work on the area to the left of the entry staircase. There are already some plants there, tree or shrub morning-glories, a jasmine plant, I am growing for my friends Bill and Mary, and a tree my landlady planted, and three plumbagos I started from cuttings.A woman who is building a house in Chacala, and planning to going back and forth to the US, is a garden enthusiast. She has only been here a few months, but she seems to have lots of energy. We have talked plants a little. She is interested in bamboo. I love bamboo, so that’s cool. Anyway, it’s fun to be able to talk plants with someone who speaks English. And even more fun to learn about plants and gardening in Mexico from someone who speaks Spanish only.
I was at the tianguis, the street market, at a nearby town this week. I got a Jasmine vine, for 30 pesos, ($2.70US) and visited with the nursery lady. I asked her where she got her plants, and she said she has a viviero/nursery in the next little town. And she invited me to visit, and gave me written dirctions.I am really escited to visit her and she how she gardens and what her place is like. I get to learn new things about gardening everyday. Of course, sometimes I misunderstand what people are saying to me. Oh well.

1 comment:

LostRoses said...

I love the little "private place" for your new pot garden. An arbor, a hammock, it could be quite lovely! Don't you just love all the little hidden gardens you see in Mexico? I find them fascinating and always wish I could peek right in without seeming too nosey!

As for misunderstanding what people are telling you, heck I do that all the time, even when we're speaking the same language!