Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Plants in My Life

While I seem to prove summer after summer that I'm not much of a gardener, I did realize this morning that's not entirely true.  I do have a few house plants that not only seem to survive year after year, but actually thrive.  Of course, I'm not sure I really have anything to do with it, but let me brag on them a few minutes just the same - and forgive me if I call them something they're not.

I can't even begin to tell you for sure how long I've had this philodendron.  Seems to me that I've had it since around 2004 when my mother passed. It requires so little care I forget sometimes I even have it, except it's so big and requires so much room. I drag it out on the deck in the spring and then back in in the fall. I did cut off about fifteen to twenty branches two weeks ago before I brought it in.  It had a lot of new growth during the summer, so I know it's really real.

Same with this palm.  Not sure how old it is.  It drops old leaves and sprouts new ones.  It makes the same trip out to the deck every spring and back in in the fall.  I just stick it in the corner and give it a little water when I think about it.  Heck, I'm not even sure it really needs water.  

This one is a lemon tree, although I've never seen a lemon on it.  I know it is only because it started as a small cutting from my friend Jean's lemon tree.   I guess you could say it's done pretty well in that it has actually grown into a tree. However, it doesn't do well during the winter when it has to come inside.  All the leaves drop off and it looks so pitiful I almost threw it out last year thinking it was dead.  Something happens to it though, once it moves back outside in the spring. It resurrects itself.  Still no lemons though.

This one is an amazing little plant in that it started out just one little sprig stuck down in floral foam. Yep, that's right, no dirt!   I thought every plant needed water, sunshine and good dirt!  Apparently not this one! 

Now this one is my favorite, without a doubt - the Kalanchoe.   I have to tell you a little about why it's my favorite...

A few years ago, my niece's parents moved down here from Minnesota to be closer to their daughter and grandchildren.  As a housewarming gift, I picked up this pretty little plant at the grocery store.  I had no idea what it was called - didn't even care.  It was pretty and that's all that mattered.  A year or so later, while at their home, I couldn't help but notice these two beautiful potted plants sitting on the front steps by the door. "Gosh, I love these," I exclaimed, "what are they?"  When they told me it was the same plant I had given them when they first moved here, I was awed.  To think that that small gift I gave, pretty much as an afterthought, turned into something so beautiful!  She then reached down, broke off a little piece and told me to take it home and stick it in a pot of dirt.  I did, and it grew!  I now have several pots from the same plant and for some reason I can't look at any of them without feeling that same awe. I've been in love with the kalanchoe ever since.

My Kalanchoe blooms red, but they come in several different colors
And finally, the easiest plant of all to care for - no water, no dirt, no sunshine - just maybe a little dusting every now and then...

Well, that's the plants in my life - none of which seem to require a thumb of any specific color.   I'm still hoping though that some of the perennials I planted the past two springs/summers will come up again this next spring, most especially the Day Lilly bulbs Jean gave me.

But then that's another blog.