Colorado & India. "ineedacupoftea" meets "dinu"

Denver, CO

This thread documents two things:
1. A few pictures and notes of botanical interest to this Colorado Gardener.
2. Thoughts and shots of the acquaintance of very distant, yet close, DGers.

Hello all;

Some of you may know me, some of us may have met in passing in Denver at TrishaG's house; and some of us have yet to meet.
I haunt the forum occasionally, but especially leading up to our biannual meetings.

I wanted to share with you the beautiful power of gardens, like 'Dave's Garden,' and moreover the internal common value of nurturing green things, to faciliate connexions. I recently returned from a trip through Southern India. An extraordinarily diverse place, it was a month of just about everything and anything that could happen. It may be easier to find worlds NOT to describe Soutern India, like "boring."

The gem of the trip was meeting a fellow Dave's Garden Member, Dinu. He and I had had a very brief correspondence regarding an orchid ID a year or so ago by e-mail. Upon realising I would be in Mysore, I was elated to have the chance to meet a fellow DGer, which I have done many times, but not on the exact other side of the Northen Hemisphere.

This message was edited Jan 29, 2010 12:21 AM

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Denver, CO

I remembered the lighthearted mood of the posts by Dinu I had read on DG over the years, and just had to meet this fellow.

Dinakar is a native Mysorean, so he was able to share with me all sorts of fine details to enrich my understanding of the place tenfold. It was also incredibly nice to chat plants (you know, that plant nut thing we gardeners do) with a like soul.

The above picture is his workplace. thoughtfully designed and surrounded by some lovely formal gardens.

Dinu and Kenton (myself). Photos courtesy of him. (We stand side-by-side with the aid of computer effects...)

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Denver, CO

Beware a thread full of photos. I've invited Dinu to comment and share as well.

Just an aside: India is good at food. It may be the finest thing the country has to offer. It's that good, and all the time. Who wouldn't be at home where teastalls are all over every street, busstand, and train platform? Anyhow...

Mysore Palace clad in its ephemeral light display.

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Denver, CO

I was going to be all thoughtful and careful and organised, but let's throw that out the window.
Here are some pictures.

A formal public garden that really speaks Indian garden style, in Bombay. Which has been renamed Mumbai.

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Denver, CO

A quick water shot of the Harbour in Bombay. Note the big hotel peeking into the left periphery. This is the Taj Majal Hotel that was bombed by terrorists last year. (rather, November 2008). I ate in a cafe where, as a token of resilience, they proudly left the bullet holes in the concrete walls. Indians are a peacful lot, and I fancy that hate is an imported commodity.

Oh yes, and the gate of India dominating the view.

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Denver, CO

A quick evening-passing shot of a slum to remind us we are in India before all sorts of flower pictures...

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Denver, CO

Another example of a public garden. (Elephanta Island)

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Denver, CO

Vegetables are grown in the scarce and valueable ground between the train rails and retaining walls. Near Bombay.

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Denver, CO

Castor Beans are all over India in the way that Kocia is all over the Intermountain Western US.



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Denver, CO

A familiar plant we see at Denver Botanic: These Lion's Tail (Leonurus spp) are among the goats and other plants that inhabit the old Government Fine Art School's Ruins in Aurangabad, Maharashtra.

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Denver, CO

Who isn't a sucker for a Thunbergia grandiflora eating a wall in Anjuna, Goa?

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Denver, CO

As a result of overgrazing in many places, dominant plants are often thorny or poisonous. Fun thing, I don't know what it is. The amusing Sensitive Plant, Mimosa pudica, is a very common weed in some places I visited.

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Denver, CO

A double-fun tree growing in Goa whose flowers do something pretty amazing when maturing.

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Denver, CO

A big aroid (fruit) whose seeds I kick myself to this day for having mindlessly discarded.

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Denver, CO

I rented a bike.
But I was still outdone.

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Denver, CO

After that bike somehow managed to find itself in a canal and didn't work as well as it did before (which at best was near-fatal), I rented another and biked out into the country to stumble into the Parsekar Organic Farm, supplier of Organic Spices and Fruit. Coconuts, Bananas, Betelnuts, Chickoo, Papaya, Nutmeg, Clove, Love Apple, Pineapple, Ginger, Turmeric, Tomatoes, tulsi, and black pepper in quantity.

Here stands Mr. Parsekar next to a mound of fine termites working as on-site compost experts.

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Denver, CO

Nutmeg right off the tree.

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Denver, CO

Palm trees grown in pots woven of palm leaves.

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Denver, CO

Nurseries are universal.

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Denver, CO

Flower Show in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu. The state of Tamil Nadu likes to grow cutflowers and is good at it- supplying India and SE Asia.

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Denver, CO

Nilgiri Hills. Tea Plantation Country. Beautiful people of the villiage Salas

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Denver, CO

A day hike in the hills. I'll be back.

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Denver, CO

The hills are often foggy.

For fun, notice the non-native Scotch Broom (which we Xeriscape folk like) at the bottom of a proper dweller of the area: the largest species of Rhodie in the world: R. arboreum, which also grows in Nepal (where it is rightfully the state flower)
This is specifically Rhododendron arboreum Sm. subsp. nilagiricum (Zenker) Tagg

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Denver, CO

After the high of being in the mountains, I had a couple days in Dinu's hometown before I flew out of Bangalore (Bengaluru).

A great Norfolk island Pine on a University Campus.

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Denver, CO

I was extremely fortunate that the day was a holiday, so Dinu had the day off and we could scoot around town. He showed me some fine places.

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Denver, CO

Now, ladies and gents. Welcome to the other "DG": Dinu's Garden.

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Denver, CO

He is currently collecting Hibiscus, and has some very fine selections.

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Denver, CO

This is where I hope he'll post some pictures of his own later. Realise it is the dry season in the savannah of Karnataka, and spring is thier best flower season, too. I get a kick out of resting and dormant gardens more than most. But for contrast, perhaps Dinu will post a few shots of his garden in its peak season.

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Denver, CO

He's rigged up some ingenious water collection.

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Denver, CO

Some orchid and Pond action. I loved his blue sacred lotus.

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Denver, CO

There was a campaign on DG some time back to send him a camera with good macro capacity.

So here he is with his trusty machine!
This is one of my favourite shots.

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Denver, CO

I love to see a gardener's favourite garden implements.

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North of Atlanta, GA(Zone 8a)

What a fun trip and how wonderful that DG brought gardeners from all the way across the world together. Thank you for sharing.

Denver, CO

(Hey friend, guess what plant I found at the Bengalore airport?)

I'm still guessing until I take a moment to ID it. A Morning Glory relative. So lovely...

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Denver, CO

Namaskaram.

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Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

Nice Kenton. Glad you made and enjoyed your trip. Thanks for posting all the pictures.

Kalispell, MT(Zone 4b)

It is good to see your face Kenton. And Dinu you too! It is so interesting to see India up close. Thanks Kenton.

Centennial, CO(Zone 5b)

the pictures are all extraordinary, but I really like the last one.

Glad you made it back in one piece!

Helena, MT(Zone 4b)

OH my! Those are wonderful pics, Kenton. So fabulously exotic!

Centennial, CO(Zone 5a)

Thanks for posting, Kenton - nice pics & it looks like you had a great trip!

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