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