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Crystal Castle’s organic food gardens

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Crystal Castle has an incredible cluster of gardens which Dan and I love to visit, and recently they began growing their own organic produce, and created the Shambhala Organic Food Gardens. In the above photo, part of the food gardens can be seen on the left, and towards the middle of the photo is their banana plantation. Yes, that’s Dan admiring the colossal clear quartz crystal.

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These inspiring food gardens have plants which include herbs, vegetables, fruits and beneficial flowers. The gardens are attractive and well designed, and inspired me to put more effort into Dan’s edible garden. Some vegetables that I’d spotted here include potatoes, tomatoes, kale, lettuce, collard greens, zucchini.

Garden Stories: Bhavani Prakash, the Mindful Gardener

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A few weekends ago, I paid a visit to my dear friend, Bhavani Prakash, who lives in the West Coast, and I was looking forward to seeing her inspiring rooftop and balcony gardens again. Bhavani hosted Ginny Giovanni (pictured above) and I for tea that rainy afternoon, and gave us an unforgettable experience of not just lovely treats, but also a tour of her garden spaces, and the condominium’s community garden, which she helped initiate.

I met Bhavani years ago through work in the sustainability field, where she is very active in creating and inspiring change. She is a strong advocate for green living, connecting to nature, and mindfulness, she raises awareness of these meaningful topics at corporate and individual levels through speaking at conferences, and by providing coaching and training. Bhavani is well known for her environmental advocacy website, Eco WALK the Talk, and sustainability and thought leadership platform Green Collar Asia. More recently, she has been conducting Mindfulness at Work training with The Potential Project. As busy as she is, she manages to be a hands-on, nurturing mother and gardener, and does well at both.

She has been able to grow a variety of fruit, herbs, vegetables and ornamentals on her balconies, including sugarcane, bananas, sweet potatoes, peanuts, winged beans, purple beans, mustard greens, watermelon, custard apple, mulberry, moringa trees, frangipanni, among others. Bhavani also makes her own compost which she uses for her plants.

Where to buy dried Calendula or Pot Marigold in Singapore

Calendula Officinalis, or Pot Marigold is an incredible medicinal plant with healing properties, good for treating eczema and skin inflammations, and also a beneficial plant in the garden. In Dan's garden in Australia, it has been so easy to grow, and has self-seeded from one plant to a whole cluster, adding vibrancy to an otherwise uniform sea of green. There is a range of marigolds, and it is important to note that if you are after Calendula Officinalis for a homemade recipe, that you do not purchase or use the wrong type of marigold.  Also, it is advised that women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should avoid ingesting calendula infusions, as it could cause a miscarriage for the former, as for the...

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Can you grow kale in Singapore?

Yes, you certainly can! Here's my Tuscan Kale plant, grown from organic seed around a year ago. I put this under my stone table for partial shade, so it gets some afternoon sun but not too much. It's very healthy, as you can tell, but it would be much bigger if it were planted in the ground. If you're juicing with kale every day, you'll probably need around 3 plants. The leaves grow pretty quick, just make sure that the plant is well watered. And if you're wondering where to get Tuscan Kale seeds, you can buy them through my Carousell page, while The Seeds Master retails Curly Kale seeds. It's not too difficult to grow, so please try your hand at it if you love kale! ...

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Looking for organic seeds in Singapore?

I just got back to Singapore from Northern New South Wales, and I've got a small collection of organic, and spray-free seeds if anyone is keen! I don't have large quantities, so let me know what you're after, and I can quote you a price. Here's the list: Japanese Pumpkin (organic) Japanese Cucumber (organic) Rosella (spray-free) Red Okra (spray-free) Malabar Spinach (red stemmed - organic) Chard (organic) Nai Bai/Tat Soi (organic) Jicama (organic) Edible Chrysanthemum/Shungiku (organic) Kale (organic) Heartsease/Viola Tricolor (organic) Coriander (organic) Parsley (organic) Mibuna (organic) Bok Choy (organic) Winged Bean (organic) Cos Lettuce (organic) Zucchini (organic) You can reach me at lambchopra[at]gmail.com. ...

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