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BIBLIOGRIND

Adventures in Writing, Reading & Book Culture

Little Czech Gardens

From the communist years there still lingers – and rightly so – the little proletariat garden plots. These were about the most private (and personal) property the average Czech could own. The concept of course was that if you give the people the little things in life, they won’t revolt over the big things, such as freedom to earn money on your own and freedom the travel anywhere in the world just by booking a seat on a train or plane.

little Czech gardensThe little Czech garden is a small plot of land, about 1/10 of an acre (or smaller) that people could put a little shed on, from which they may use as a potting shed or, for the creative minded, but in a small wood stove to heat up a pot of tea for a Sunday afternoon. And the Czechs work these gardens still, creating nice little flower plots (roses are hugely popular here), with a small shade tree to boot, a bench, and even a row or two of vegetables. Weekends find the oldest Czechs puttering around in these gardens (the young have no time for nostalgia, actually, so intent are they on making money to buy more “stuff”), turning the soil in springtime, pruning bushes and cutting fresh flowers in summer, raking leaves in winter, and leaving all quite fallow when the snow falls.

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