Nicole Richie on Gardening, Raising Kids in Hollywood


Don't let the purple hair and tattoos fool you, Nicole Richie is a lot like other traditional moms.

"I wake up around 5:30, before the rest of my family, and that's my time alone," the 32-year-old reality star and mother of two told the latest issue of Paper magazine. "Then I spend some time tending to my garden."

Richie's garden, in the backyard of the Los Angeles home she shares with rocker hubby Joel Madden and their 6-year-old daughter Harlow and 4-year-old son Sparrow, is more like the produce section at Whole Foods.

"We have apple trees, blueberry trees, lemon trees, strawberries, butter lettuce, arugula, sugar snap peas, tomatoes, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, spinach, mint, thyme, oregano and sage," Richie told the magazine.

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Richie, who poses for the May issue in her backyard wearing designer duds, gets her green thumb from her famous father Lionel Richie.

But, she explained, her dad is "more of a landscaping type of guy, and I'm more of an edible garden person."

In many ways Richie's life has come full circle. The style maven, who has her own fashion line and is gearing up for the VH1 version of her AOL reality Web series #CandidlyNicole, is raising her kids in Hollywood the way she was raised.

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"The best part about raising kids here is that I was never told that being gay or mixed race was different at all. It's such a big melting pot, and everybody is so open-minded and welcoming here, I don't know where else I would raise them," she said in the interview.

The former party girl and "Simple Life" star has grown up, but she's done it her way.

"My idea of being a grown-up was living behind a white picket fence and changing who you were - getting a bob and wearing beige," Richie told Paper, "but I found freedom through my brand and being myself and being able to do it my way."