Nasim Qadir’s gar­den is a won­der­ful oasis of calm and green peace in the mid­dle of a crowded bustling city

By Saima Malik


ith the prop­erty prices sky rock­et­ing in the past five years it is no won­der that the cur­rent trend is to uti­lize as much space as pos­si­ble for prac­ti­cal pur­poses. Gar­dens are get­ting smaller, while the cov­ered area is get­ting big­ger. There is a dearth of exam­ples where the urge for wide open spaces to lux­u­ri­ate in green­ery is sat­is­fied except at pub­lic parks or at golf courses. One such prime exam­ple of rolling greens is Nasim Qadir’s gar­dens.

Garden of Eden

Blithely ignor­ing the urge to con­struct a large house on her mon­strously expen­sive prop­erty in Gul­berg, she has opted for only build­ing on one quar­ter of her four Kanals plot, while the rest has been con­verted into lus­cious gar­dens! “I like open spaces sur­rounded by plants and flow­ers. A place to truly relax,” says Nasim Qadir, with a smile. Few peo­ple real­ize how sooth­ing it is to peer out of your win­dows into shrubs and flow­ers or what an aura of peace a well main­tained gar­den lends to your home.

On enter­ing her metic­u­lously main­tained gar­dens, the first impres­sion is of unbound nat­ural beauty lend­ing seren­ity to the open vis­tas of her home! The gar­dens are split into three ter­races, a much lauded idea, each level divided by a cou­ple of steps. They sur­round the house on three sides and are expanses of grass dot­ted by stunted trees and lined with shrubs and taller trees. “Kangi Palm, Gul cheer, Marwa, Safaida, Baans are among the many kinds of trees in my gar­den,” she declares.

The tow­er­ing trees pro­vide cool shade from the blaz­ing sun and the mul­ti­tudes of flow­ers add the required dash of color to the scenery. “Gulab, Raat ki Rani, Pan­sies, Motia, and Nar­cis­sus are some of the flow­ers grac­ing my lawn, though the list changes sea­son­ally,” she explains. Not only that but grow­ing here and there (seem­ingly) is mint, corian­der, rose­mary, spring onion as well as fruit trees –mango, lemon, guava and peach! Talk about prac­ti­cal… Adding icing to the cake is a reg­u­lar pool lead­ing to a patio. “We like to enter­tain” she con­firms, “the open space makes it easy and the pool gives our par­ties a flam­boy­ant air!”

The truly spec­tac­u­lar fea­tures in my opin­ion are the hang­ing eaves and cling­ing ivy that sur­round the façade of the struc­ture. It is the roman­tic, whim­si­cal touch com­pounded fur­ther by a secluded spot sup­port­ing a seat­ing for two right under. The trail­ing creep­ers bring to mind the gar­dens of Baby­lon while the cane fur­ni­ture (rus­tic touch!) plays peek-a-boo with the eye as the wind shifts the strands of “Bougainvil­lea” and “Jhomar”!

An exotic cac­tus, grown and sheared to form a fancy abstract shape, Aloe Vera, gar­den rocks and spread­ing shrubs are scat­tered art­fully to enhance the beauty of the place. Many rooms on the ground floor of the house have huge glass win­dows afford­ing panoramic views.

Another set­ting of white (a sophis­ti­cated choice of color) lawn fur­ni­ture graces the mid­dle of the lawn. “On most evenings my fam­ily enjoys tea here, together unwind­ing after a long day,” she says. You can see to all ends of the gar­den from this focal point. To send chil­dren as well as adults into peels of hilar­ity are two swings, one a wrought iron two-seater while the other, an inno­v­a­tive huge wrought– iron semi sphere with cush­ions to lounge in, at dif­fer­ent shaded cor­ners. It’s a per­fect set­ting to read a book on a cool day, or enjoy cof­fee dur­ing chilly weather.

Enjoy­ing this pri­vate haven in the mid­dle of a crowded city are also many birds which have declared it their home and even more lend this a tag of authen­tic­ity. Such huge space is not easy to main­tain and main­tain well at that but the end results are worth it, a slice of heaven at your doorstep!

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Val­uemag print edi­tion 4, August 2008, Lay­out: M. Asif, Pho­tos by GM Shah

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This arti­cle was orig­i­nally pub­lished in Val­uemag, issue 4, August 2008

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