Plants On Parade

As many readers know, Peter has been an avid gardener for several years. From late March until mid-November he just loves digging in the soil. His preference is for vegetables, but he works with flowers sometimes too. So you can imagine that the months of December through February are, for him, like going cold turkey off a powerful drug.

During the winter months, Peter tries his best to bring his hobby inside. He carries in as many herbs: rosemary, basil and parsley, as he can fit onto the side table beside the sun room door. Then he coaxes, no, begs me to use them. “How about a little basil in our cereal? ” or “Do you think you could put some parsley on those cheesecake slices?”

Then he moves on to the oleander; the one that was once a small bush and is now a large tree. But he still babies it: “Sue, I think the oleander is starting to feel cold outside.” How he knows this I have no idea. He conserves his strength for a couple of days and then lugs this tree up the 6 steps to our sun room door, sits down to rest a bit, and then humps it over the doorstep on to a mat. After another rest, he slides it on the mat through the dining room into the bright windowed corner of the living room.

The oleander stays there until the holiday season when I mention that it is time to put up our Christmas tree – in the living room window. Back goes the oleander, sliding through the dining room and into the sun room, where it sits in a tiny corner. Peter is convinced that this corner is drafty and the tree will certainly not flower out there, but it will have to do for a few weeks. On January 1st and not a minute later, back it goes on its journey to the living room where it waits patiently for the sun to shine.

When I casually suggest that the sun room corner now looks a little empty, Peter finds a plant stand and relocates the parsley, which is now quite leggy from underuse. Pretty ugly, I think, and rush off to the store for a new plant, a peace lily. The parsley travels back to the side table where it will sit until late March.

This year I decided that Peter was having far too much fun so, in early December, I bought an amaryllis bulb encased in wax. I have done this in previous years and the amaryllis is usually in full bloom by Christmas. This year, however, was different – because we had No Sun! The bulb sat in the kitchen window, dormant for weeks. Finally in January, while Peter was moving the oleander for the third time, I moved the amaryllis into the living room too. Slowly, slowly, it began to open up a tiny bit.

Then last week a miracle – sun! I put on my running shoes, grabbed the amaryllis and searched the house for the sunniest spot. Which turned out to be the bathroom. Over the course of the morning, I kept sliding the plant down the counter, inch by inch, as we followed the sun. When the sun left the bathroom, the amaryllis and I followed it to the kitchen and slid along the counter there. At the end of the day, I took it back to the living room – in full bloom. It stared up at the bare oleander. l could almost hear it whispering, “Nah nah nah!”


PS A sneak preview of summer:

The oleander in its happy place – outside

5 thoughts on “Plants On Parade

  1. Another great story Sue. You and Peter sure keep yourselves busy always. Hope all plants and “Peter” are happy now.
    Does he grow his annuals from seed inside?
    Enjoying Montserrat as always.
    Happy indoor gardening. Moira


  2. I love Peter’s passion for gardening. I used to love being in my garden. It is such a rewarding experience. House plants also give us joy and are so good for you and adds a wonderful element to your decor. The days are getting longer. Hopefully he will be out in the garden in March.
    You should take him to Canada Blooms, starts on your birthday, maybe a blog for you before you depart to the sunny south.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s