Have your sunlight an eat it too!
Paris is a city that is small. Paris proper anyway. It measures 33.6 sq. miles, or 86.9 kilometers and holds over 2 million people.
This means, space is crowded, especially since there is no building up (think New York city skyscrapers). So forget about having a lawn, most people don’t even have a balcony. and did you know that there is an extra tax for having a balcony!?! Yep!
And get this, there used to be a tax on windows and doors. That’s what happened when the financial crisis broke out during the “Directoire” period of the French revolution. The Gov had no money so they invented new taxes. Watch out people… our current crisis isn’t over yet. Perhaps we should all move into cardboard boxes…
But I digress…
I wanted to tell you about my “balcony” project this summer. Well, when I say “balcony” I really mean “shallow ledge”. But it is wide enough to put a row of pots on it, and I can also hang them on the wrought iron railing! This summer I decided it was time to do something nice with this small space. For the past several years, I have made feeble attempts to spruce it up, but my green thumb skills needed some sprucing up of their own.
This year, instead of putting only flowers out that would soon die a desperate death from neglect, I decided to put out something a bit more fruitful : fruit! (and herbs)
Three pots of strawberries and three pots of cherry tomatoes, and every time I see a new one budding or ripening, I am instantly happy!And cooking up tasty dishes with the fresh herbs that I pick off of my little balcony is more than satisfying. One of my new favorite uses for fresh rosemary is gently crushing it into a gin and tonic cocktail instead of a lime. Yum!
I love the act of eating something I made grow.
I even have bumble bees that come to check out my lavender plant every day. I hope they are the bees from the rooftop honey beehives at the Opera de Paris!!!
It’s wonderful what you can do even with the smallest of spaces.
Nice article, inspiring me to get something together in terms of growing what I eat. I live outside Paris, so have a bit more than a window ledge but still, laziness does have a rather large role to play…
Your strawberry is pink on my screen by the way, but I think it’s just a monitor problem.
Oh yes, what I wanted to say was that there are one or two old OLD houses in Paris which tried to get around the problem of limited space. They used the clever trick of making themselves bigger than their footprint. This was done be either having projections or bits of rooms sticking out into the street, or, my favourite, just simple getting wider as they went up, giving the impression of towering over the street. Ingenious!
I too have a window ledge I wish I could call a terrace! I’ve been toying with putting flower pots out for over a year now, but given my flower-murder past, I still haven’t planted anything. It must be so nice to see them on the ledge in the morning.
Thank you for the inspiration!
This made me happy, just reading about your delight! Way to go 🙂
Well thank you Nicole!