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Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Plant minder and general torturer

It's cool today in Ottawa.  Not cold, but cool, and raining, and my hibiscus is thrilled.

I have had this particular hibiscus since my mother died---she'd had a huge and beautiful one in her living room, and when I saw one at a florist that month, I had to have it.

I do have my mom's love for hibiscus, but alas, I do not have her ability to make them thrive.  This one has been going through bouts of listlessness, yellow leaves and stalky growth, followed by frantic outbursts of gorgeous scarlet blossoms, which proudly hold their heads up for a day, then twist into  yellowy-pink guilt-promoters waiting in the grass for me to acknowledge my failure.

Dave has been very solicitous of the hibiscus, and watched it both indoors and outdoors for signs of neglect or overwatering or drought, all of which I was able to provide.  I had had visions of waiting till he'd gone to work, transplanting the whole pathetic thing into a larger pot with some rich soil, then cutting it back, but when I go on to envision his dismay, which will be followed by expressions of understanding and magnaminous support, I just can't do it.

Not only for his sake, but because understanding and support would just make my cup run over.  Lately I haven't been as agile, mobile, or even as conscious as had been my habit, and he's had to be the grandchildren's best friend, the cook, the car minder, the potwasher, the outings planner and the get-up-in-the-night-to-get-me-water guy. Doesn't he get it----how that pounds all my guilt buttons?


  1. Men! Pounding on your guilt buttons! The cads!

    Remember the Beverly Hillbillies? No, you were probably too smart to watch them. Anyway, in one episode Granny was distraught over the state of Mrs Drysdale's hibiscus and kept trying to cure poor Mrs Drysdale. Me? I now sympathize with anyone who has an ailing hibiscus. That's the kind of guy I am.

  2. I have trouble with flowering house plants, too, so I do understand!

  3. Oh bother. What to do? What to do? Should I stop helping, so you don't feel guilty? Should I bop you up side the head and call you Eve? (For those gentle readers who don't recall, I'm sure Lorna has mentioned her Mother the "I must be guilty" Queen in at least one previous blog.) Or should I continue to be oblivious to your guilt buttons and let you work this out yourself?

    Your other fraction (sometimes half; occasionlly a little more, occasionally a little less. Don't sweat it; it all works out in the end.)