By Kalindi dasi and Lilasuka dasi
Throughout NV’s history, Vidya has been the one who would head up planting the flower garden for Radha Vrindaban Chandra’s garlands and offerings. However, some years back, she had to stop this service in order to take care of pressing health issues of some of her family members. Consequently, Vidya was very disappointed to learn that the picking gardens basically stopped. However, this last spring, Vidya’s family had the good fortune to receive some rebate money for natural gas on their property, so she was then able to pay off her big medical bills. Vidya recalls, “I felt it was time to take up the much-needed flower picking garden again.” And take it up she did, with great enthusiasm.
During a community meeting this spring, both Vidya and her husband, Madhava Ghosh, offered their services in this special field of expertise once again. They took on the project with determination and high hopes of getting the garden up and running by spring of 2012. They received a grant from ECOV to help get the garden started. With this grant, Vidya was able to buy the supplies and the seeds for the garden. She later was able to start germinating 50 flats of those seeds along with the help of several other devotees, The Palace Of Gold was more than willing to allow them to use the green house to house the plants during and after the transplanting.
She had to literally start the garden from the ground up, beginning with laying the sod. This was quite difficult. Vidya tells the story, “Although Madhava Ghosh is not feeling very well these days, he hopped on the tractor to help establish the beds. There is also a shed there. We just need to maintain what we’ve established, now that the hard part is done.”
With the help of Kalindi and family, (whom you may know from the palace lodge) and Raphael, as well as some volunteer guests, and some help from other community members, the garden was established and fully planted by May 9th 2012.
The flowers in this garden are strictly grown and picked for the deities.
Vidya goes on to say, “In my opinion, growing flowers is as important as deity worship. It IS deity worship. Krsna says in Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 9 text 26, “If one offers Me with love and devotion a leaf, a flower, fruit or water, I will accept it.”
Some of the flowers you will see in the garden are a variety of marigolds, mums, dahlias, peonies, rudbeckia, echinacea and even sunflowers. In the future we hope to grow roses as well.
Vidya has been doing this important flower growing service since about 1979. In her own words, “There is a need for the younger generation to develop purpose in their lives. They need to take up responsibility and not just work. This way, hopefully some of the young people can take over the cause of growing flowers for Krsna. Kalindi is doing a good job up there.”
Vidya appreciates the residents who agreed to start flats this year, and she will supply more flats to others who will do the same. Vidya also encourages the residents of NV to start their own flower gardens for the purpose of giving the flowers to the deities.
The garden has been successful thus far. There have been several pickings done and you may have seen some of the beautiful flowers draped around the deities during worship. The main idea is to simply please the Lord, with offerings that are hand grown by the devotees here in this community.
Visitors are welcome to stop by to see the garden and speak with the devotees helping to maintain it. Kalindi is currently in charge of maintaining and picking, however, since we wish that this garden be STRICTLY for the deities, all maintenance and picking will only we done by those authorized to do so. (If you are going to pick these flowers we do ask that you please use scissors so as to ensure the health, life span and the production of the flowers. Picking the flowers by hand is harmful to these plants.)The many hours and hard work that have gone into this project have been well worth it and we hope will pay off in the end. Our goal for the future is to not have to buy any outside flowers which are polluted with pesticides and other chemicals. Having FRESH-cut flowers right here in New Vrindaban just makes more sense. It also creates a great opportunity for devotional service.
Donate to the: Flower Fund
Bhakti Shastri E-course
Bhakti Shastri E-course in association with Bhaktivedanta college, Radhadesh Belgium
Festival of Colors 2013
Srila Prabhupada says
... one should place himself under the direct guidance of a particular associate of Krsna and should follow in his footsteps