Wicked Wednesday – Green Thumb or Brown?

tineTo celebrate Edith’s release week for A Tine to Live, a Tine to Die, we’re talking about growing food. 2011-04-02 22.28.33

Wicked Cozies, do you grow food in your garden? Or do you kill off house plants without even trying?

Jessie: I have a green thumb for any plants that live outdoors. I have raised vegetable beds, perennial borders and fruit bushes and trees. I love hanging baskets and window boxes and pots of all sizes. I have a green house and grow lights and too many seed catalogues. My household composts everything it can. I love designing garden spaces and I love spending time in them. But houseplant care eludes me entirely. I blame it on our forced hot air heating system but it may be that I forget to water enough and I try growing  things that are not really happy indoors.

Sherry: Where is the black thumb category? I managed to kill bamboo which is nearly impossible. However, I do have a seemingly indestructible houseplant a friend gave me a cutting of six years ago. It grew so big I had to divide it into two pots. This plant should be studied by scientists — it is a genetic anomaly. Although maybe my husband is secretly taking care of it to make me feel better about myself.

Barb: Brown, brown, brown. My mother-in-law’s been in rehab following a hip replacement and I’ve had an orchid of hers in my house. Honestly, I can barely handle the responsibility! The thing just sits there, haunting me. It’s making me a nervous wreck. Can’t wait to give it back to her.

Liz: Don’t EVER leave me in charge of plants. I have great intentions, and I love looking at them, but I never remember to take care of them. And when I do, it’s too late. Or one of the cats eats the plant and throws up all over the place. Which prompts a mad Google search to find out if the plant was bad for cats or not, in case I have to make an emergency vet run. It’s just not worth the drama!

Edith: I have one or more house plant in every room. A college roommate taught me how to take care of them. Water once a week, and then only if you stick a finger in the soil and it is dry. Put them in the shower or under a sink hose to get the dust off the leaves. Add fish emulsion to the weekly water in the spring and summer. Host them outside when local 2011-05-02 18.50.31temperatures permit. And the garden, even a small family plot like the one I have now? I am so happy when I’m poking in dirt, training a vine up a string, harvesting dinner. (See how the lettuce have grown compared to the picture at the top of this page?)

Julie: I used to have a green thumb. I lived in a little house, had lovely gardens with healthy hostas, a ancient rosebush, and other perennials I filled in with annuals. I loved the look of white impatiens that I used to fill in the beds. Inside I had a ton of houseplants throughout. Fast forward ten years. I live in a condo (with lovely gardens), but I can barely keep my two Christmas cacti and the aloe plant alive. I have no idea what happened to my mojo, but it is gone gone gone. Maybe it was the house I owned. It was the gardener’s cottage of a large estate back in the day. Maybe Thomas Cooney (the original owner) was actually the secret weapon…I feel a ghost story coming on. The ghost of the garden.

4 Thoughts

  1. Outside, I am green. Indoors…there has yet to be a houseplant invented that I cannot kill. That includes the African violet my grandmother gave me when I moved from Louisiana to Pennsylvania. I *tried* to keep that thing alive, to no avail. Still feel guilty about it!

    1. I should give you a cutting from the indestructible houseplant my friend gave me!

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