True story – one day last summer, I was talking to our gardener about our plans for the front yard at Fish Hooks. I pointed to the plant above. “You may as well take that one out,” I said. “It’s not terribly pretty. And it’s never, ever flowered.” Three days later? I came out one morning to find this! Needless to say, it stayed.
Bromeliad bloom in the garden of the Lowe Art Gallery – Green Turtle Cay, Abaco, Bahamas.
Several members of my extended family are enthusiastic and successful gardeners. Me? I’m no expert on growing things but I love flowers, particularly tropical varieties, and I’ve developed a bit of an obsession with photographing them.
Turns out we may all have inherited our interest in gardens and gardening from my great-grandmother. According to my cousin, Alton Lowe, Ma May had a passion for growing things, and her garden was one of the most beautiful on Green Turtle Cay. Any time you passed, Alton says, you’d see her outside, tending her plants.
Along with roses and carnations, Ma May grew fragrant gardenias, several types of jasmine, pomegranates and grapes. She even introduced shrimp flowers to the island.
That she was able to keep such a lush garden surprised me, given how rocky the yard is at Fish Hooks. But apparently the hard ground was no match for my great-grandmother. She simply cut holes in the rock and filled them with soil.