Tuesday, March 1, 2011

All Things Green and Growing

From the time I left my parents at 18 until my late twenties, I had a recurring dream:

I was the caretaker for a tiny animal, normally misshapen and quite frequently near death.
I would have this panicked moment right before I woke up: how do I save this tiny infant

My eyes would pop open, my skin covered with a sheen of night-terror sweat: invariably, the baby beast didn't survive, despite my feeble and fumbling attempts to right its life.

In my waking life I smoked, over-worried and generally treated my body like an "old honky-tonk", to borrow a lyric from Kenny Chesney.

I had a black thumb, a sad heart and a chip on my shoulder.

When I met Anthony (after a tonload of self-work) the dreams stopped, the self-care increased and the desire to keep a plant or two around the house began.

I scooped Jones from a litter in need of a good home
Janey followed soon after:

I fed them, watered them and watched their health carefully, giving them tender loving care and a nicely socialized home.

Fast forward 5 loving years: the cats are alive and well and the thumbs have been turning a nice shade of grasshopper...
I try and rescue plants; sometimes I succeed, sometimes I fail.

I could still get weepy over the maidenhair fern I rescued from the 'hot and dry' section of a local greenhouse (they require moist and dim!!!)
whose root ball was infested with mealy bugs.

I killed her in my attempts to save her from the infestation. Oh, Marian.... how I adored your fronds!!


In my studio, I did a bit of re-arranging with my mother here:
I put a bookshelf under the window with the best light and moved the big comfy chair into its place: it looks bigger and comfier than ever....

and the plants are

hella thriving, with room now for even more of them on the shelf.

Tell me about your thumbs!!!

Do you have any indoor plant recommendations?



tattooedblogger said...

NICE BACKDROP.....and I dont have much of a green thumb, although I do have a bakers dozen plus in my house...they are the sturdy type...low maintaince gals...I love the color of your walls and all the plants and the joy that radiates through my computer screen. My house is always full of FALL....Primitive Halloween YEAR ROUND!!! And dogs and turtles and cats and hamsters and TEENS..HAHA. Have a great night, Delia

Sunny Rising Leather said...

Turtles and hamsters and teens ---- oh MY!!!! :)
xoxox to you, Dearest Delia!!

marie bell said...

i wish to sit in your flowered chair and have you tend to my spirit like you tend to your greeneries.

UmberDove said...

ok, this is most likely a little late but...

LOVE THE NEW HEADER! LIKE, LURVEY-DURVY looooooove. Well played missy!

I DO have planty talk and I plan on talking it with you NEXT WEEK. Until then, my new favorite plant-baby is a beeeeautiful crimson colored Rex Begonia. They have leaves like paintings. Also, you can not kill a pothos if you try and lately I've been seeing ones with the most amazing neon green foliage.

Let's go to a nursery.

Amy Nicole said...

Love the new header!

Sunny Rising Leather said...

Marie: come on down, the chair is fine :) xoxox

Umber: get in mah belleh!!!!!!!!!

Amy: many thanks!!! I laid everything out on a piece of raw leather: fun times :)

still lily said...

ok first, header crush...love it.;) so cool.
and on to plants..well, succulents are my crushulents (i do believe i just made up that word right here, right now)...you need to just pluck those wee dead lovelies from below the succulent shown, just pinch them off and your lovely will be all the happier...looks like you have the plant thang down...also love ferns..in the bathroom they thrive usually...absolutely lovely chair and great light.

kerin rose said...

oh yah....plants throw themselves at me, wanting to come home and join the foliage party in my home....whaddaya wanna know, sistah? ....

my faves ( shhhh dont tell) are shamrocks I have had for almost 27 yrs....they have flowers when they are happy and close up to go to sleep at night....they just need to be talked to alot...

and snake plants...the best air cleaners in the world...every studio needs one...

nova by tess said...

My mother is really the one with green thumbs. She can make anything grow. I haven't had time lately for trying to keep anything besides our little family alive but hopefully that will change after the wedding.

I love succulents. That's what I am gonna attempt to keep alive. ha ha Maybe you have some advice for me :o)

MrsLittleJeans said...

I was always extremely proud of my greenest green thumb until I moved into our current condo and now I know it was not my green thumb rather it was the light...to me the most important thing for the plant is the correct light first and then water/nutrition...now I choose plants carefully according to where it has to be, frankly, a very difficult thing to do. You are doing well from what I see! xoxo

Corinna said...

Love the new look!!

I have a lot of houseplants under my care... about 25 at my office and probably 40 at home (though I do share the care of these with my roomate!). For the most part, my plants have been robust and healthy, and I have little experience with nursing sick or infested plants.

I find that some plants want to thrive, and some less so... Though it's certainly a symbiotic relationship, and perhaps I just don't know how to give these plants just what they need.

Among my favourite house plants are:
1) purple shamrock: amidst a sea of green, they are such a wild and vivid bunch of sprouts!
2) ZZ Plant: super hardy and so exotic!
3) lipstick plant: trailing trailing everywhere, and such sexy blooms!
4) variegated snakeplant: a classic staple
5) grape ivy: my first plant, which has spawned so many babies (cuttings), it's the plant that keeps on giving...
6) jasmine: the smell!!

My roomate brought to our joint collection a Hoya--and let me tell you, this is the most sensual plant I have ever encountered. When it blooms, it produces a huge bulb of tiny pink blossoms, and then proceeds to ooze a sticky sweet love juice by the light of the moon. OOOOh!

Okay, enough is enough! Though I feel like I could go on and on... 65 houseplants might seem a little extreme, but other than the evergreens, we don't see green in Edmonton for more than half the year!