Gardening as a Hobby

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By Francis Saldanha
Bellevision Media Network

Bahrain, 06 May 2013: Hobbies differ from person to person. There are as many hobbies as there are men and women in the world. Tastes differ and so do hobbies. Someone may have stamp-collecting as his or her hobby, while another may find pleasure in reading books. Stamp collecting, collecting of coins, photography, swimming, gardening, kite-flying, etc. are  few of the common hobbies.


A hobby is that activity which is carried on in leisure time. It is a means of recreation and not of earning money. It gives delight and helps in passing the leisure time. Any activity which is carried on for the sake of earning money ceases to be a source of pleasure. It becomes tiresome. A hobby, on the other hand, is an activity which is carried on entirely for the sake of pleasure which it gives.



Gardening is one of my favorite hobbies. As a self taught gardener, I derive great pleasure from this hobby. In front of my house, there is a small plot of land which I have been using as a garden. I grow flowers and some vegetables of the season on this plot. Beside this, I have a number of flower-pots in which I have grown some very-green plants and some flowering plants. I indulge in my hobby early in the morning as soon as I am out of bed or in the evening after I return from the office. I do not allow my hobby to come in the way of my office work or my family commitments. I do carry on gardening only during my spare time.


Gardening isn’t the most likely of pastimes in the dry, barren Middle East. Gardening enthusiasts need not despair just because they happen to live in Gulf countries.  With little patience, it’s possible to build your own tropical paradise.  The region is actually well suited to green-fingered pursuits, as long as you have the know-how. Maintaining a flower garden is easier than planting one.  Although they might make it on their own, applying a bag of manure in the early spring is a good idea. Don’t forget to turn over the soil to properly mix in the manure and rake smooth when finished.  If you have perennials planted,  be careful not to disturb their roots in this process.



One of the most important things to do to prepare your garden for planting is to spread and till compost or peat moss over your garden, especially if it is a new garden. Adding fertilizers and nutrients into the soil several weeks ahead of the actual planting will help to ensure healthier plants. Once spring arrives, your planting timetable will depend on where you live, your soil type and your local climate, even though spring officially begins in the gulf from October month.  You may have several more weeks of winter weather. Plants and vegetables that thrive in cool weather. One tip for spring planting is to plant different varieties of crops and flowers in different parts of the garden than they were previously planted. Crop rotation helps to improve the health of the soil as well as preventing soil disease from spreading.


Flower gardening is undoubtedly gaining in popularity and gives one excellent reason to spend some time outdoors and test out their green thumb. You can order seeds for flower gardening from catalogs or buy them from a nursery. Most people prefer to go to the nursery and buy actual flowers and then transplant them. After you have prepared your garden area and bought flowers, it is a good idea to lay the flowers out in the bed to make sure you like the arrangement and that they will be spaced properly.



When preparing a flower garden, you must decide what type of look you want before planting. For instance, mixing different heights, colors, and varieties of flowers together in a ‘wild-plant style’ will give your garden a meadow look and can be very charming.  If short flowers are planted in the front of your garden and work up to the tallest flowers in the back you will have a ‘stepping stone style’.


One of the easiest processes in flower gardening is the planting. If you have seeds just sprinkle them around in the flower bed. For planting transplants, dig a hole just bigger than the flower plant, pull the container off, and set the flower plant  in the hole right side up. Cover it with the loose soil and press down firmly, then water. There are some decisions that have to be made before even flower gardening can be started.  You must decide whether  you want to have annuals that live for one season which have to be replanted every year or perennials that survive the winter and return again in the summer.  When buying and planting, pay attention to what kind of flowers thrive in your climate as well as the sun light requirements.



My hobby is useful in many ways. It gives me pleasure and refreshes me when I am tired after the day’s hard work. In the morning, it brings me in touch with the green plants and flowers. In this way the lungs are filled with pure air. This is good for health. Everyone should have one or the other hobby. Generally, most people do not have any hobbies. They should try to have some hobby. In this matter, one must not be guided by others, but should select a hobby which suits their taste and the circumstances of their lives. Pleasure is the chief end of a hobby, and so the best hobby is the one which delights and recreates! In my case it turned out to be gardening!.



Comments on this Article
Francis J. Saldanha, Moodubelle / Bahrain Sun, May-12-2013, 2:48
Thank you all for the wonderful response. It feels good to share my experience and your views as well. Mr. Vincent Praveen rightly said tha 'nature always yields, so one must care for it and nurtures it'. On the other side our mind is like a garden. The daily grind can really take a toll on you and make your life stressful and unhappy. Sometimes, opting for something as simple as planting a sapling can make you feel better and de-stressed. There are people who take an interest in gardening as it gives them the satisfaction of seeing their green plants, flowers, fruits and vegetables grow, however, gardening does benefit us in many ways. According to research, gardening is known to have therapeutic effects on our stressed nerves. It helps us wind down. And that particular feeling, of having created something, is a powerful magical cure (elixir) that can take us a long way towards feeling happy, relaxed and totally de-stressed and gardening is not just an enjoyable pastime, it can also help deal with depression. Yet that aching back and those stiff muscles are, apparently, a good sign because a physical workout in the garden is said to help you feel younger!
Vincent Praveen Castelino, Pernal / Mumbai Wed, May-8-2013, 2:37
I admire your hard work and hobby in todays busy rat- race world!!!. Gardening is my favorite hobby too.... I proudly say that I am the Son of a humble farmer. Keep it up. I am a die-hard person to do that and I have done it in the past just a few years ago away from Mumbai s Central Suburbs (i,e: at Badlapur). Anyways it s just a history for me now today. It s as simple as that " Nature Always Yields" You must "Care for it" and "Nurture it".!!! All that is in your hands if you have a will to do that.
Vivek, Bahrain Tue, May-7-2013, 12:29
10 hours of work and yet you have the best green wizardry of the compound. Magic, Francis Uncle, Purely Gifted Hands
Clement Lobo, Chikmaglore / Bahrain Tue, May-7-2013, 9:27
Shree maan Saldanhabano Thumka haavn kalzacha gundayethavn haardhik Abhinandhan pataythan. maayn gavncha mathyeccho sugandh, saath dheryan pois galfacha hya rever thumi pasarlo. thumcha hya vorthya sadhanak havn hardhik ullas pataythan. sorvespor dhev baap thacheen vinchnar ashirwadhan thumcha hya wavracher ani thumcha kutmacher vothundhi munn magthan. Hya sobith fulancha vodtha borinch thumchen kutam vishal kalzachen, kushal monachen zavndhi munn amchi apeksha. Dhev boren korun.
Charles D Mello, Pangala Tue, May-7-2013, 5:43
Keep it up Francis. Good hobby and photgraphs.
Eugene D Souza, Moodubelle Mon, May-6-2013, 9:15
Dear Francis, thanks for the wonderful pictures of beautiful flowers that you have nurtured in your garden, a floral oasis in the desert city. Keep up the good and pleasant work that you have been carrying on.
Ronald Sabi, Moodubelle Mon, May-6-2013, 2:59
Keep it up Francis! Beauty is at its best in your back yard. Gardening, cultivation and landscaping is my favorite too.
Melwyn DSouza, Dubai/ Udupi Sun, May-5-2013, 11:02
Dear Francis, it is amazing.Where there is will there is a way.And again you have proved with your hobby!! Nice, keep it up.
Philip Mudartha, Navi Mumbai Sun, May-5-2013, 10:40
What a riot of colors, Francis. And, I must suspect that a team is at work at building such a eye-catching collage of photographs. I was transported to the beautiful paradise you have created for you and your family in a near barren outreach. You have amazing patience with your hobby. Keep it up!
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