Monday, May 08, 2006

Of Gerbers and Greenhouses

I bought a plant last week for my office. That brings the plant count in my office up to six. Two African Violets (one a gift from Richard to me last month, one most likely a gift from Richard to Shalena a few years ago), a funny-looking miniature red palm tree type-plant, a "cyclamen", a half-dead plant with little yellow flowers, and a monstrous Aloe plant that has taken over most of the corner table upon which it sits --its arms look like long tentacles reaching out for me--if I disappear someday, you'll know why. Oh- make that 7 plants-- there's a corpse of a plant on my floor. I think it used to be a rose of somesort... It was on its way out by the time Hayley bequeathed it to me. The plant that I bought, however, was a nice pretty springtime flower, bright and cheerful- a pink Gerber Daisy. That was last Tuesday that I brought it in. Today I came in to work only to find it completely wilted over. Bone-dry. Heat stroke, I'm guessing, but who can really tell?
From the shape all these plants in my office are in, you'd never guess that I have worked two long summers at greenhouses. I've done succulents, trees and flowers- that covers all the foodgroups in my office, and yet each plant suffers from a different ailment. I think one of my African violets has root-rot. Saw that a lot in BC. Never quite figured out how to fix it. The half-dead yellow-flower plant seems to have missed out on the pinching that most other greenhouse plants go through- it's so tall and floppy I think it's aspiring towards bush status. Anyhow, I sliced right through its dreams and ambitions with my scissors the other day, went right to the main branch and chopped it right off. Wasn't happy with me for several days, but the rest of the plant seems to be compensating now and filling in those gaping holes, it's really filling out quite nicely. But it's still half-dead.
My Pet Monster seems to suffer from a combination of root-rot and dehydration, simultaneously. I don't mind, though, without that handicap I'm sure he'd have traveled halfway across my office by now.
Anyhow, all I'm hoping is that my gardening skills don't reflect too poorly on my work skills, as they are the first thing that students see when they come into my office. Sigh. My poor Gerber. Would have been better off in the grocery store with fluorescent lightbulbs as its only source of nutrition.

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