Garden inspiration

When I met Shermaine for lunch at Concetto in The Cathay a couple of months back, we spotted an indoor herb garden in the restaurant. I’ve always wanted a herb garden by my kitchen window but hubby was convinced it would not succeed because we don’t get direct sunlight there. Encouraged by the indoor garden I saw, I naively attempted to create one in my kitchen. Oh we had so much fun preparing for it, using an old fish tank my husband got for free because it leaked.

First, we laid a layer of pebbles to allow for drainage.


Then, a layer of soil on top.


The pretty it up, I found an old broken plate from one of the potted plants outside, and decided to use it to make a sign.


I thought I would use chalkboard paint so that I could change the sign down the road, so I got Jason to paint it.


Unfortunately, I didn’t like how it turned out. Too black.


So I decided to clean off the paint, and when I did, the edges were left looking black. I thought it look quite rustic this way and left it as it is. Using a stencil, I traced out the words: “My Herb Garden”.


And coloured the letters with Sharpies.


Here it is, before I added the herbs. Driftwood was from another fish tank.


And I present my herb garden, in its full glory, with Jason’s cactus to add some colour.


Not wanting to be too ambitious, I used two ready herb plants from the supermarket and just repotted them.

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Alas, that glory lasted for all of 2 weeks. It was not for my lack of trying. We moved it wherever the sunlight shifted to. The tank was set on a table with casters making it a breeze to move around. But it just wasn’t getting enough direct sunlight. The lack of sunlight proved too much for the herbs. This is what it looks like today! SAD.


The herbs didn’t die on me, and they didn’t go to waste either. I started cooking them when they started looking droopy! So for two weeks, we had delicious roasted rosemary chicken, rosemary chicken stew, Thai basil minced pork etc for dinner.

Then, last week, I went down to Macpherson Primary as part of a Compass visit, and saw a beautiful garden the school parent volunteers, staff and students had created. And I got inspired all over again! Not that I’m doing anything to my garden at home, but am keeping it for the future if and when I get a plot of land with direct sunlight.

A vertical garden using recycled drink bottles, which reminds me of the one we saw in Malacca.


A (horizontal?) garden using wood planks.


A compost pile.


A flower bed tended to by a grandmother volunteer.


All under a “treehouse” where outdoor lessons are conducted!

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Visitors entering the treehouse.


Another view of the treehouse.


The pupils at Macpherson Primary have many outdoor learning spaces, and hopefully they grow up to enjoy having greenery around them, and have better luck tending to herb gardens than I!



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