If I say “garden”, who knows what kind of garden comes to mind? Vegetable garden? Flower garden? Botanical garden? Community Garden?
Wouldn’t it be great if we had multiple words for “garden” to help make it clearer which kind of garden we are referring to?
For example, a vegetable garden could be come an earden, short-hand gardener talk for “edible garden.” (“Hey Carol, why not call it a varden?” Because a varden is a garden that is full of varmits like rabbits, moles, chipmunks, and deer… you know, varmits.)
But don’t confuse a varden with a zarden. A zarden is a garden that is home to animals purposely owned by the gardener, their personal zoo of cats, dogs, maybe even chickens. Who doesn’t think of dachsunds when thinking of Great Dixter, the gardens of Christopher Lloyd, over there in England. He always had a few dachsunds running around, making his garden a zarden.
Then there is the farden, which is of course, a flower garden. Barden is a botanical garden, and warden is a… not a keeper of a jail… but a water garden or a garden with a prominent water feature for which it is known, like the garden at Chatsworth House in England.
Shall we carry on? A parden is a procrastinator’s garden, where there are many projects started but none finished. Pardon me for my parden, I really do plan to take get caught up by next week, or the week after that or at the latest, certainly before winter.
Now what letters have we not yet used? How about B… bardens are gardens that have spectacular season flowering bulb displays. Oops, no, we used bardens for botanical gardens so bulb gardens will have to be spardens, I guess. Why spardens? Because they are most often enjoyed in the spring.
Can a garden be a earden farden sparden varden? Yes, of course it can be all of those and so much the better if it is. We’ll call those multi-purpose gardens, mardens.
Don’t forget tardens which are full of trees, much like an arboretum but isn’t tarden a better word? (“Carol, it isn’t.” Don’t care. Arboretum doesn’t rhyme with garden.)
Nardens are primarly planted with native plants, by the way, and lardens are gardens that are so lovely they should be in their own category.
Cardens are primarily gardens planted in containers, especially nice for people who live in apartments and condos without a lot of land. Community gardens? Well, since we’ve used the letter C already, lets go with aarden, since in England they call community gardens allotment gardens.
We would go on, but you get the idea. For every garden, I can come up with a new term for it. Just try me!
(Garden fairies here. We are garden fairies and we are furious that fardens aren’t fairy gardens! What is Carol thinking? Herefore and forthwith, fardens are fairy gardens and flower gardens can be flardens. We are garden fairies!)
Helen Malandrakis says
I have a lot of different garden areas in my yard, and I have names for them all. The Pollinator Garden, The Butterfly Garden, The Toss Garden, The Herb Garden, The New Herb Garden, The Knot Garden, The Vegetable Garden, The Front Yard! It’s how I keep things organized and know where I planted what. Anything in containers isn’t a garden in my record keeping!