Jeeshant, Salesperson at Exotic Nursery interviewed by Lakshay Gupta (2017)

About the intern: Lakshay is currently studying Geography honours from Shaheed Bhagat Singh College, Delhi University. He is an avid enthusiast about creating new things. By doing this project, he wants to spread the idea and information about terrace gardening. 

Why do we need a terrace garden?

Today we live in mega-cities. Cities that have turned themselves into concrete jungles.Yes, jungles but without green vegetation. We always tend to make plans to escape the hustle and bustle of the city as well we try escape the crowdedness and the pollution in which we live our day to day life. Well what if we make something in our own houses which let us calm down and make us relax and also connect us with the very pleasing NATURE .

Doing this is very simple and might just require only 30 minutes of our lives daily. We all like the sight of lush green plants, but in the cities of concrete, greenery is fast becoming a rare sight. Luckily, we can bring greenery in our home and make our home environment healthy and positive. Terrace is one of the best places to start your small garden as it receives good amount of light every day. Gardening isn’t everybody’s cup of tea. You may think it's an ideal activity for your grandpa or grandma because they have time on their hands and can afford to spend it on plants. Or maybe you live in a small apartment and have no space to set up your garden. But leaving aside the excuses it hardly takes 30 odd minutes each day to look after the terrace garden and it can be set up within a few days.

What is a terrace garden? 

In one sense, a terrace garden is a garden which is established on a terrace, roof, or patio, usually in a house where there is limited gardening space. These types of gardens are especially popular in urban areas, and they are sometimes used in restaurants and other establishments as well.Terrace gardens in the sense of patio or rooftop gardens can be ornamental or functional, and they are usually designed with container plants to make the terrace easier to
manage. Gardeners can also build raised beds on their terraces for gardening. Sun exposure and access to water are two important things to consider when
establishing the garden, as is the goal of the garden. Some people like to grow fresh herbs and vegetables on their terraces, while others want to create a green retreat. Occasionally, gardeners create a mixture of the two. Plants can be trellised around a terrace for privacy or shade, or used to create a pleasant recreation area for residents and guests of the home.

Jeeshanth is working at the exotic nursery since last two years. He works as a sales representative at the nursery. He has vast knowledge about indoor plants especially succulents and bonsai's. He sells the products of the nursery to the entire country through e-commerce giant amazon. He happily answered the questions I had and gave me a tour of the nursery as well.

Exotic nursery operates in such a small area but still it offers such wide variety of plants. How is this made possible?
Most of the plants sold here are brought here by our management who has a farmhouse in Haryana.

As most of the plants sold here are ornamental plants or indoor plants. What can a terrace gardener expect from this nursery?
Mostly all plants here are meant to be placed either in the balconies or in the terrace. Even the indoor plants need some amount indirect sunlight and are required to be placed outside for sometime. We provide high end exotic plants for the terrace.

Which plants do people prefer and buy the most?
Phycus, Cactus, Rattle Minira,grafted Bonsai are best selling indoor plants. Bink and Rose are bestselling outdoor plants.Overall the hot selling plant at the nursery is the Golden Pothos.

What temperature do these plants require?
The plants are tissue cultured plants and hybrid species. These can quickly adapt into any environment and can thrive in all temperatures. But plants such as rose, marigold, guldavari dry up in summers. Only hardwood plants can survive all the seasons.

What can be the benefits of making a garden at the terrace?
Having plants at your house makes your house eye catchy and more beautiful. Plants can absorb toxins and help to purify the air. Also if you are able to grow vegetable at your terrace you can have a constant supply of fresh vegetables whereas having plants indoors act as natural air-purifiers they are easy to maintain and enhance the mood of your house.

What tips can you give to person starting terrace gardening for the first time?
Buy hardwood plants as they are easy to maintain and then move on to softwood plant. Water your plants daily in the summers. Having a shade net during summers prevents plants dying due to high temperature. Water should not only be given to soil but also water should be sprinkled on the leaves.

Terrace gardening is not just placing a few pots on the terrace and planting them with seeds but it is much more than that. There is a lot of science and craft involved in terrace gardening. Terrace gardening involves a gardener to follow a particular regime of plant care. Terrace gardening can be a hobby and also an early morning exercise which involves you to water the plants,fertilize the soil, eradicate the weeds and whole lot more.
A perfect balanced terrace garden involves a careful selection of plants which can be kept open under the control of nature and thus should withstand all that which the nature has to offer. Though a lot of us would not like have a burden of maintaining a garden and would not want to give an hour everyday just to maintain a garden on the terrace but watching the beautiful dahlias while drinking tea on the
terrace and having visitors like the parakeets and just being in the vicinity of green leaves,flowers and butterflies will just be enough to refresh our body and will also help in reducing the toxicity of our cities. And as the old monk says if you have a library and a terrace garden you have everything you need.

Contact - glakshay2475@gmail.com

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