The Not-So-Botanical Guide of Our [Moroccan] Yard

One of the great things about our living situation in Rabat is our walled-in yard.  It is perfect for the kids (well…besides the tree with poisonous flowers and the giant thorn bushes and the human-sized ant hills).  As a bonus, the moderate climate of Rabat means that there is almost always something in bloom.  This Spring, I’ve tried to capture a few of our favorite blooms from the yard.

This one is my favorite.  A simple, purple daisy.  I don’t get tired of trying to discover new things about this flower that I didn’t notice before.

We have a lemon tree as well.  It’s a bit hidden and I failed to even notice it the first few months here.  I thought our house help was really, really good at keeping us well-stocked with lemons until I realized that the inventory was coming from the tree out back.

And this is its bloom:

Poivre picante, another useful thing to have on hand.

Like Tanzania, herbs grow here really, really well.  Almost too well.  Our gardener comes twice a week and we still have trouble keeping the basil buds pruned.  We have a regular supply of mint for Moroccan mint tea, but we also grow several other very fragrant herbs traditionally added to tea.  They were all new smells to me, so I can’t possibly identify them.

I instructed our gardener to purchase some rosemary. He looked confused before telling me that we already grow rosemary…and entire hedge row of rosemary.

The roses seem to grow all year round.

I can barely keep track of them.

Loquats are our new favorite fruit.  When they ripen, we stand under the tree and eat as many as we can before they fall off and rot.

The last good loquat just fell this month, which means it was probably my last loquat ever.  Do they sell these in the US?

These are beautifully intricate. No idea what they are. Anyone?

Oh, and we have a pear tree as well…

…but I was told the fruit has worms, so I have not partaken.

We get a few strawberries, but I the ones at the fruit stand always look so much better. These never seemed to get red enough.

Then of course these…

…and these.

Not included among the photos were birds of paradise, impatiens, begonias, lantana, a number of succulents, and various other varieties common in the US.  Oh, and I forgot one more garden fixture, the head honcho who eats all of our flowers.  His name is Blackie:

We also have Pinkie, Big Red, Mac, Teo, Phinease, Blade Runner, and one more little guy whose name I cannot remember. We suspect several of the babies did not make it through the winter, but their bodies have not been located. Poor guys. We are still hoping they are late to wake up from hibernation.

This exercise of course, caused me to pine over my Tanzanian garden, which was much too hot and sticky and mosquito-y to lounge around in comfortably.  But to it’s credit, it was more fruitful and exotic than our Moroccan one.  To compare, visit here:  The Not-So-Botanical Guide of our [Tanzanian] Yard.