Happy St. Valentine's Day! Instead of writing about my love for my husband, daughter, dog, and family, which is a given...I decided to write about another long-time love of mine - my love of plants and flowers.
My baby book says my first word was "flower". While my mom is not much for gardening, I do remember her pointing out specific plants to me - tulips, daffodils, impatiens, azaleas, argeratum, mint - as we'd walk around the house. When my parents uprooted us (no pun intended) from one end of town to a bigger house on the other (hey, there were four kids!), I was in fourth grade and as a result, I got my own room. Soon, the plant life became a significant part of my decor. My dad installed a plant rack on the ceiling so I could macrame pot holders and have my plants hang in front of the window. I named each of my plants and with the spiders, I had a family tree. My babysitting money would be spent at Frank's Nursery buying new pots, soil, and plants. I always trolled the $1 rack to give an unwatered plant a good home.
Now, my latest obsession is Orchids. On a trip to Hawai'i back in 2005, I dragged my husband to an orchid farm where 'we' picked out six dendrodiums and threw down $120. I gave them as vacation gifts to my Dad, who also shares my love of flowers, and my grandmother, who I knew would take care of it. I kept two for myself and my husband doled out the last two to his co-workers. I'm not sure how the co-workers are doing with theirs, but my mom threw out my Dad's plant, and my brother inherited my grandmothers. *sigh*. I have mine and while they haven't provided me with too many flowers since Hawai'i, each has bloomed once. A small victory!
On a routine trip to Home Depot about a year ago, the reject orchids left over from Christmas were sitting on the discount rack. All were dry with dead flowers. True to form, I scooped up the three dendrobiums and brought them home. They have lived quite well in my sunroom and one is so happy, I've been rewarded with not one, but two shoots of flowers! These are the 'thanks' I've gotten from saving it.
I'm hoping to save five more from my local grocery store. They sit on a back counter almost dried up. I've gone in three times to see the discount price, but the florist and I are on different schedules, so I've left a message through the produce man.
I'm now obsessed with orchids and all the beautiful flowers they produce.