Letter of the week: All homes should have a garden

Chinese spinach grown along a corridor. PHOTO: IRIS HO

As a child, I went from living in a house with a garden to a three-room Housing Board flat.

I was taken aback by the cramped conditions of the apartment, especially the lack of a sunny open space. Where would we sun our pillows, dry umbrellas or wet shoes, or set food out to dry in the sun?

My child's mind reasoned that if there was no room to grow a plant, there would be no room to raise children. The farther from the ground and gardens I got, the more I dug my heels in about raising a family in a concrete niche.

The garden is both a metaphor and a living classroom for life, and we need to return it to our homes to live more holistically.

I am loving the shift towards community gardens and am all for a return to roots, literally, with planters or balcony space that should be seen as a standard for living (HDB flats should come with balconies for gardening, by Mr Wong Boon Hong, June 23).

It may be too late now for me to change my mind about having children, but it may make a difference to another child living in a high-rise apartment.

Lee Swee Kim

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