I got briefly excited when I noticed a Yahoo.com article titled, 10 Garden Ideas to Steal from Scandinavia – wow, I thought to myself! Finally an article which will talk about things a little closer to home.
The article is short and while much of the content reflects the attitudes of summer cottage living (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cottage#Scandinavia), (Finnish/Suomi mökki) I can say with some certainty that gardening here does take on more serious and structured manifestations than the article would lead readers to conclude.
In regard to mökki, most Finns that have one may also have an extensive garden featuring both vegetables and flowers. Time spent establishing, furnishing, and up-keeping these spaces becomes a job unto itself, but one Finns can take on since they also happen to have longer vacation periods than say workers in the United States. And also, since many Finns are apartment owners and city dwellers, getting ‘back to nature’ is how they ‘de-stress’ by reconnecting to nature. Because most apartments don’t accommodate for gardening beyond the occasional patio plant, outdoor gardens at the cottage are usually where one can make up for not having one in town. The landscape here is much different to that which many US readers are familiar. The ice age left behind lots of stone and it makes for interesting building, farming, and gardening, but also breath-taking scenery. Finland is fortunate to have so many lovely lakes. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Finnish_Lakeland
I thought the spattering of comments at the articles’ end were also pretty hilarious. I would sum up by saying that not everything you’re used to or familiar with always works like you’d think it would in other places or contexts, and as such it’s probably a good rule of thumb to be flexible in your perceptions on how others are doing nearly the same thing as you, just differently.
– All the best from Vanha Talo Suomi!