Last year we decided to plant a garden. In all the excitement of buying plants, the decision to include potted greenery as well seemed like a really good idea. I made sure Adam understood that he was to be the main caregiver to the plants as I had already proved my black thumb with the tree that I thought was fake when I bought it (which has since died btw). All together in pots, there were: 12 succulents, a tomato plant, mint, a large palm, a tangerine tree, two large indoor plants and a hibiscus tree that for some reason Adam wanted to “rescue” from the dying plant area. I think he was flexing his green thumb muscles for me. By the end of the summer, the tomato had produced tomatoes and then died, the mint dried out in the heat and the two indoor plants were brought outside by Adam and fried. I would like to take this moment to point out that not all thumbs are green all of the time.
The two trees, the palm and all 12 succulents were all going strong though. Then Adam started a 6 month period where he was traveling for work and was gone at least month at a time. We both dreaded the potential outcome. I tried to convince him that the plants are the cheap part, that since we bought all of the large pots that we could just buy new plants in the spring and it would be fine! t seemed that he was very attached to THESE plants, so I took my job as caregiver very seriously. I moved all of the plants inside before there was danger of a frost and tried to get them in as much sunlight as possible…which was near impossible due to the layout of our house. I even permanently stained the dining room table trying to keep the succulents alive. Sadly 8 did not make it through the winter mainly due to little fruit fly like insect in them, but the 4 that did are doing great. The palm almost made it, but the only light was in front of a sliding glass door, and I think it got too cold. We have not given up on it yet though, the dead plant is still on the porch waiting to revive itself (I have nothing to do with that thought). The real focus of my attention was on the two trees though. Adam would constantly ask about the well being of the them and I felt like if they died it would crush him. So I researched and did everything right. I let them go dormant and as a result most of their leaves fell of (which was normal). I did however prepare both of us for the sad fact that sometimes trees never flower again after a dormant winter. When Adam returned home he absolutely doubted my care giver skills…but as you can see, miracles do happen!!
The hibiscus is the most amazing plant I have ever seen. The poor thing has fallen over a few times and during the tornado the other day actually landed upside down and I though broke in two. It however is still is going strong and blooming everyday. The tangerine tree had one little tangerine hanging from it that grew slowly over the winter. We finally picked it the other day, hoping that the nutrients that were feeding it would help the rest of tree and overnight the entire thing budded. It is now filled with the most intoxicating smelling flowers, and a bit late in the season, so I think that theory was valid. We also repotted it to a larger pot when it came back outside. The biggest factor in these two trees thriving though is that we have had flash flood causing thunderstorms everyday for a month. I’m pretty sure these trees have been loving the weather, even if we’re not. We decided to forgo the veggie garden this year as so much was going on during the planting season, but as we already have all the pots from the plants that didn’t make it, I plan on filling them up in the next few weeks. Hopefully everything will at least make it to the fall!