The pandemic has certainly done a number on many of us. Social distancing, quarantine, lockdowns, all have produced some fairly unusual gardens and habits. One that I saw online is called “cardening.” This is where people grow plants in cars. I think it’s a trend worthy of the most dedicated gardener.
What Is Cardening?
When bored, I often search the internet for enlightenment, or just plain stupid videos. I’m sure I’m not the only person that can go down the rabbit hole watching cat videos, or learning about odd cooking techniques. One day, I stumbled upon a video of “cardening.” This trend is not a viral one, but it does produce unusual gardens. I suppose it makes sense, especially in areas where one spends a lot of time in their auto.
People put all kinds of things in their cars. The front or back dash is often decorated with stuffed animals, figurines, or sometimes a car savvy cat. It is not all that odd to see plants in cars. For instance, the VW beetle with a flower bud vase is a classic example of plants in the automobile. It was a hippie expression of peace and love which has moved into the 21 century. But some drivers take it to the next level.
Succulents are among the easiest plants to grow, and quite stoic about poor conditions. A few hens and chicks planted in soil in the front seat console? Why not? A dish garden reclining on the back seat? Sure. A hatchback bearing an assortment of cacti? Certainly. Cup holder holding mini pots of succulents? Of course. Other trends might see a car decked out as a fairy garden, or sporting hanging containers from the clothes hangers. Air plants are especially car friendly. They can hang from the rear view mirror or nestle in the unused ashtray.
Unusual gardens are a feat made possible by imagination and perhaps a touch of madness. But for the dedicated gardener, or perhaps the frustrated landless gardener, cardening seems to have potential. The solar energy that pours into cars keeps them light and warm. It is the perfect environment for plants that need tons of sun and don’t mind getting hot. Just remember to water them fairly frequently.
Growing plants in cars may not be for everybody. And you have to consider safety. In case of an accident, opt for plants with few sharp spines or spiked leaves. Use plastic containers that won’t bash you in the head at a sudden stop. Don’t block your window or rear view mirror views. Don’t decorate with rocks or stones that could become blunt force projectiles in case the worst happens on the highway.
Cardening is probably a trend that will subside soon. But while it lasts, perhaps bring a touch of greenery to the automobile. Even a nice posy of flowers will freshen the air and brighten the interior. Plus, cardening allows each driver to personalize their much used vehicle. As long as it doesn’t hurt you or anyone else, I can think of worse things to put in your car than a few plants.