...or tries to...

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Secret Garden




Okay. Not an absolute secret. But if you were driving past this strip mall, and didn't need a wig, or a fan, you would see little reason to stop. Maybe the pink posts flanking The Girls would give you brief pause.
Most likely, not.
But if you knew what lay behind it, you would stop, you would park, and step through.




And there would be gum, and ice cream and candy, and jam, and chocolate covered pretzels. Promising, if you like sugar, but that's not it.

Through the store and out the back door, and you're there.



A pineapple plantation. A hydroponic strawberry farm. A microcosmic jungle, 


thick with trees growing their very strange and beautiful fruit, dripping with them-


 jack fruit,



and mangoes,


avocados,


and bananas.


Banana's flowers,


and pineapples like flowers.


Then  rescued birds, in every color, alongside peacocks and swans and goats and miniature horses, and a tortoise, sleeping somewhere.




No lie, I hear.


But it remains, ultimately, a place to pick strawberries, in season, and buy local fruit, and it's five minutes away. My adopted state can be a strange and frustrating place, and the source of odd stories and much head shaking. And I do shake my head and sigh a lot more than I want to. But it's also a place where people make their own ordinary square feet over to realize their passions, transform them into tropical gardens and bird shelters, bamboo groves and jungle grottoes, glowing with color and humming with sound. 


5 comments:

rosanna said...

This is a place I'd love to visit.
A secret garden is my favourite kind of hiding place. Rosanna

PS it looked more like a durian than a jack frit to me....smelly memories....

Daydreamer said...

Hi Amy! I had to chuckle about your Secret Garden,..... I have posted a doll story on my blog about a visit to just such a garden.... in mini....tropical only in my dreams.
Your photos of the exotic fruits are wild! And I love the view down that tunnel of green...... what is it that makes that such an appealing theme....? Thank you for taking us along with you on this visit!

Sans! said...

Hehehe Rosanna :):). Amy, her smelly memories when she was with me :). Those are fond smelly memories :).

Jack fruits are sweet smelling and oh so heavenly with shaved ice and a bit of lime and teaspoon of sugar syrup. Especially for a hot tropical afternoon.

That garden could have been one of our very own! All those tropical fruits. I am surprised that there is such a fascinating garden right in your neighbourhood, Amy. Where in heavens (literally ) do you stay? You have the most amazing neighbours, cafes, gardens even weather !

Amy said...

Rosanna, I've never tried a jack fruit! Sans swears it's sweet, thank goodness. We have a giant plant down in Miami that blooms every few years, and it supposedly stinks so strongly that they have people come just to sniff it...of course, they named it Mr. Stinky-

http://www.virtualherbarium.org/Amorph/amorphophallus01.html

Sans, next time I go I'm going to ask whether they serve the jack fruit. Americans tend to be very staid about their fruit, if we didn't eat it as a child we tend to stay away. I'd love to try it your way, for certain. And it's so beautiful in its own way.

I have web friends from India and Dubai, and Mexico, and of course, Singapore, and we all share the same trees. So much of our plants were planted here from other warm countries that I feel like I know your plants as my own. Much of the plants we seem to be known for, like our palms and hibiscus, came from other places-the coconut palms in most of our postcards are from Jamaica!

My town is much like any other in the US in many ways, lots of concrete, shopping centers, suburban houses, gas stations. But what I do love about it here is that it also has a wonderful downtown filled with odd old houses, secret gardens in strange places, lakes filled with alligators, a dollhouse shop near a French crepe restaurant near an art deco hotel, and ocean at the eastern end, parrots making nests on the telephone wires. But it can't be more interesting than Singapore and your stories and places!

Wasabi Honey Bee said...

Thanks for the comment on my blog. What a neat secret place!!l