The Teddington Gardener

Barbados

The last leg of my recent trip, a whistle-stop tour of the island of Barbados

I might have a banana plant in the garden but here the similarity ends – if I am ever to think of creating a garden with a more tropical feel, this is what I am up against!

I’ve much to learn about the plants I saw on the island – many were familiar but only as houseplants here in the UK. Nurtured in the warm confines of Barbados, many are giants. Unlike Cape Verde, which we visited earlier in the trip and where the rains are as likely to fail as not, there is a lushness to the vegetation right across the island. We spent more time on the less popular east coast – as this faces the Atlantic, swimming is pretty much forbidden on account of the treacherous currents. It was my favourite part of the island, unless of course a kindly benefactor would like to book me in to the Sandals resort for a week or three.

As the rain thrums against the conservatory roof and my lone, lonely banana (Musa basjoo), is wrapped and swaddled in layers of fleece outside, I can still hear the crash of the waves, the swaying of the palms and tufted tops of the sugar cane – and maybe recall the heat of a golden sun overhead….

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