Canadians love gardening. You’d think in this climate-challenged country, investing time and energy in nurturing delicate flowers is a waste—at least, that’s my opinion. But Canadians seem to disagree. As soon as the snow melts, locals flock to seasonal “gardening centres” to buy huge bags of top soil, seeds and other supplies.
I respect people who can grow trees, vegetables, fruits or flowers. I don’t have a green thumb and I discovered the sad truth early on, in Grade 4, when we had to grow a bean seed in cotton and water. We had a month to complete the assignment and at the end, the kid with the tallest bean would win a prize (yes, the French school system is competitive, I know). I wasn’t even close to winning. My bean didn’t even sprout roots.
I tried to grow bell peppers one year in Ottawa. I love this veggie so I figured I could plant my own and in no time, au revoir the chore of going grocery shopping. How naïve… Four months later, I had one tiny bell pepper. The colour was lovely, mind you, and it tasted great—the full three mouthfuls of it.
I kind of gave up on gardening. I grow onions because they really don’t need anything, and we have 韭菜 (Garlic chive) because my mother-in-law planted it years ago and it grows back every spring, whether we like it or not (we don’t object, it tastes great).
I do like taking pictures of flowers, though. I go to the Tulips Festival every year and I enjoy wandering around the Arboretum at the Experimental Farm. Don’t expect me to give you much background info on these lovely flowers (or the bugs on them!), I’m clueless about them—but aren’t they lovely?
You can see the complete set of Ottawa Summer on Flickr.