One of my favorite pastimes is gardening. Small-scale gardening to be more precise. I no longer wish to look upon row after row of vegetables in the garden. I now do container gardening and I am much happier for it. The fact that I KNOW how to grow things on a large scale is satisfaction enough.
While I no longer want to keep a large growing area, along about February each year, I still begin to yearn for the seed catalogs to show up in my mailbox. There is nothing so exciting to a gardener than to peruse the newest selections of seeds and cuttings that are available. Iris hybridizers that promise the newest, truly ‘black’ offering makes my heart go all aflutter! Or a rose that is rust-resistant. Well, maybe… We can dream.
You might think that the home of someone so in love with plants would be full of green, growing things. It is not.
I have but a few favorite, old plants that have lived with me for years. They get to come inside for the winter and go out to enjoy the elements during the warmer months.
The plants that actually do take over my home from time to time are African Violets. I love them and can become obsessed with them! My major problem is that I cannot seem to make myself throw out any broken leaf. If I accidentally break off one, it goes directly into a small jar of water to root. And root it does. Or during repotting and ‘cleaning up’ an old plant, any viable leaf that has been removed MUST go into water. I can’t seem to help myself! Before long, there are little babies everywhere. I have been known to give them away just to reduce my supply so I can start over.
The one AV I will never part with is my grandmother’s old purple one. She had it for years and I think every grandchild now has a start. It is huge with long, arching leaves and single purple blossoms. It is not compact. It takes up space. It has a presence. In my home, it has pride of place whenever I arrange the AVs.
There is something about keeping a plant over an extended period of time. Continuity, I would say. I don’t think of my grandmother every time I see her violet. But I know it’s hers. Everyone in the family knows it’s hers. Its name is simply “Grandma’s African Violet”.
My sons have starts of the lanky old plant. Hopefully, they will be able to keep the continuity going. They knew their great grandmother. Their children did not. In the future, when it is referred to as “Grandma’s African Violet”, they will think of me. That makes me happy.
Do you enjoy growing things? What is your favorite plant? And why. I love to hear your stories and see your pictures.