Cherry Saturday, July 27, 2019

Today is Take Your Houseplant for a Walk Day.

No, I did not make that up.  Here’s the  blurb:

“Proud plant-owners can show off their leafy friends to the neighbourhood when Take Your Houseplant For A Walk Day rolls around. The idea behind this day is to celebrate plants, and to acquaint plants with their immediate environment, which is supposed to be healthy for them. Plant-owners can admire each others’ plants, and exchange stories and tips on plant-care.  For those who find this concept a little strange, there are more conservative ways to get involved. Plants grow throughout their lives, and you can use this day as an excuse to re-pot any plants that might be getting a bit big for their abode. You can take your plant for a walk to a new location within the house, perhaps one where it might get more sun. And if you don’t own a houseplant, there’s no better day to bring one home and introduce it to your family.”

So I bring in a houseplant and say, “Look, Milton, Veronica, and Mona, I want you to meet our new housemate, Herb,” and one of them ignores me, one of them chews on it, and the other one pees on it.  

Since I have a black thumb (every plant I buy dies), I’m just going to pretend this is Ice Cream Day instead.

53 thoughts on “Cherry Saturday, July 27, 2019

  1. As a resident of a home with big-ass garden, I don’t own a houseplant. And I’m not about to start now.

    Today has been chicken soup day since I am trying to stop a cold from developing into something worse.

  2. I haven’t had any plants since I moved out of my apartment in Sweden in 2012. I gave my two orchids, which I’d successfully managed not to kill for 3,5 years, to my dad. He managed to kill them in a couple of weeks. I’ll dedicate a full 30 seconds to them instead of taking a walk with an nonexisting houseplant. R.I.P. orchids. I’m sorry for the death-sentence.

    The insane heatwave has finally subsided a bit, so I’m trying to wash towels and will make a chili con carne later today because why not. DF has said we’ll get a stationary airconditioner installed this autumn so next summer won’t be such a disaster. We had a mobile one, but it was almost too large to fit in our bedroom, and since we’re getting a larger bed in a month or so it wouldn’t work. Besides, the hose was just about long enough to stick out our window, and we had to have it open then which let in warm air anyway, so screw that. Ordering an airconditioner-installation now is either impossible due to too high demands already, or twice as expensive as normal because the buggers definitely know they can profit from the weather. So I guess we’re sticking with coolbox ice packs in bed, wet towels and an actuallytooloudbutwhatsagirltodo-fan if/when it gets hotter again.

    Ice cream day sounds wonderful. Let’s make all summer days ice cream day!

  3. I put my stephanotis outside for its summer holiday last week – ought to repot it soon, too. The others (mostly geraniums) are really garden plants, and went out months ago. I daresay the stephanotis is also enjoying the showery weather. When there’s a break, I must go and harvest the redcurrants. I have a feeling there’ll be far too many of them: it’s a sizeable bush. And though I love redcurrant jelly with lamb, I don’t have it more than half a dozen times a year.

    Finally got round to harvesting the morello cherries on the abandoned plot nextdoor to mine yesterday. As soon as I reached for the first cherry, I was stung on the knuckle – my finger and hand are so swollen I went to the chemist and am now dosing myself with antihistamine, etc.

    The cherry jam is OK, but still not as good as my favourites: strawberry, plum and damson. On the other hand, I’ve discovered I do like gooseberries, as long as they’re sweet. So I’ve got two bushes of those to pick, stew and freeze. All of which is helping me plan what fruit I want to grow long-term. Must remember there’s a limit to the amount I can get through in a year, even jammed or frozen. Though I do eat quite a lot of fruit.

    1. Jane, currants make a good jelly too. I pick them and what I don’t use goes in the freezer. I have a recipe for tabboulah (sp?) which calls for currants so I use them in that all summer and into the fall.

  4. I’m trying to figure out how to fit this into a houseplant walking thread….

    Okay — point #1 (not my actual exciting point, but more on target): Lego is now making some of its pieces out of plant material rather than petro-based plastic. A lot of these pieces are in a new $200 US set of a tree house with multiple rooms, a staircase, and a spare set of autumn leaves.

    Point #2 (thrilling!) There will be a dachshund piece in the blind bag series 19 coming out in early September. AND a poop piece! Can anything be more fun? I think not!

    1. You never have to tie anything to anything here. The only time the Argh Cop comes out is in case of personal attacks. It’s really a pretty laid back place.

    2. Picked up poop today; but, I pick up poop every day. Also watered my house and container plants.
      Now it’s time for ice cream with fruit.

  5. My plants, like me, are introverts. I doubt they’d like a walkabout. They actually tend to get cranky and start dropping leaves when moved or fussed with.

    I’m all for the ice cream day substitution, though I’m currently in an airport with a sad lack of ice cream. A mistake on their part.

  6. I sometimes wonder why I have house plants. If they are anywhere near where the cats can get to them, I no longer have them. But I’ve had some of them for years (and years), so it’s habit. Right now, all of the indoor plants have been enjoying their summer holiday on the back deck, under the pear tree. In September, they’ll come back in to their perches up on the ledge the builders built around the great room for some unknown reason. It’s about 10 feet up in the air, and it’s quite a pain to water them up there – but I don’t have to worry about kitty nibbles!

    I once was waiting at the airport for a red eye flight back home when I found a vendor with individually wrapped ice cream treats. Exorbitantly expensive (as most things are in an airport) but well worth it. My traveling companions had to go get their own ice cream when I came back munching mine!

  7. Some asshole has been stealing/vandalizing off my patio-their last trick was coming in, pulling up everything I had stuck in the ground and dumping a chair on the table. I haven’t been out there since because I have no way to stop them (my apt. complex of course will not do shit, like getting a gate) and therefore, my plants out there have died. Whee. I just feel like I have to leave it there so the asshole feels like they won and won’t do other things.

    1. That’s horrible! I’m so sorry! At lease renewal time, I might suggest that you ask for a lower rent since you are unable to use the patio.

      1. That would not fly. Also our rental vacancy rate is in the tiny decimal points so they have no incentive to want to keep me really :p “It’s a college town.”

        I keep trying to think of booby traps except that is not my skill in life.

        1. Perhaps a border of protective plants like poison ivy, nettles, and other plants.

          Also I don’t know how your complex is set up, but it may be worth checking if other residents have had stuff vandalised, if so maybe getting together to tackle this.

          1. My immediate thought was “Plant poison ivy,” which kay has covered nicely. Cactus might do as well.

      1. God, I hope.

        I have enemies at my work that hate me (one tried to get me fired) and I keep fearing they found out where I live because my old car got vandalized several times too. Meanwhile my male neighbor has stuff all over his patio and nobody touches it.

    2. Yikes. Have you thought about a game or trail camera? I think that’s what they are called. A friend gave me one as a gift years ago. It’s battery operated, uses a SD card, snaps a still picture every few seconds and mine came with a strap for mounting it to a pole or tree. For me, it was just neat seeing all the different critters but it could be useful as a cheap security camera just to see what’s out there.

  8. I would love it if my husband took some of his (definitely not our) 17 jade plants on a walk and gave them away. It’s one thing to have 10 African violets and I think we must have 5 orchids he manages to get to rebloom and many other plants where we only have one or two or three of the variety but no one needs 17 jade plants. He had taken 6 or so to the office but now that he is leaving his job they are all coming home.

    It’s not even that I have to water them when he travels for work (about a third of the year); it’s that they do not give me joy. At least, after 5 or so they give me no joy. I would be willing to replace them with plants that bloom or that look interesting and different. Or even different cacti and succulents. But I’m afraid if I offer that I will get both.

    When we built this house we included four long tiled sites (two benches two window sills) for plants—the benches hold plants in winter and cushions in summer. But his plants have now expanded to the stair landing, the front entrance, the window area in the family room, the kitchen counter, my son’s desk and the garden room (ok, that doesn’t bother me) all of which will create problems if water drips. Somehow when we both travel and friends water there is always water damage

    Sorry to whine. The problem with Marie Kondo is that often what gives one person joy gives another extreme irritation. I could write a similar whine on fish tanks.

    At one point the family motto was “face the biomass”. I have never been sure whether the kids meant to support their father’s efforts to bring in more or my efforts to draw a line. We did win the guinea pig battle when my daughter went to college and my son and I refused to care for a new one when DH was traveling.

    I am pro animal and pro plants, but there is a limit to the amount of time I want to spend caring for them after I work, care for two kids, a house, a garden, and various volunteer activities and for a third to a quarter of the year it’s all on me.

    At least I never came home to find fish swimming in the tub. It was always a possibility. Also fish? You can’t snuggle with a fish.

  9. Someone gave me an blooming orchid as a thank you gift. After it bloomed, watered it occasionally, it bloomed again. The wonder of it all. DIL gave me an air plant in a rock garden. It is thriving. Take it out once a week and soak in water for 30 minutes.received a jade succulent plant for a thank you Doing well. So…house plants I ignore, Water when I remember, are the plants for me. Bought 2 more white orchids. Love them.

    Which reminds me, have to dunk the air plant in water for a while. I’ll take it for a spin around the yard after.

  10. Take your house plant for a walk. I think not. Why not just call it expose your house plants to a bunch of pathogens and insects they are safe from in the house.

  11. I recently sent some twelve year old Christmas cacti of various colors to a new home. Over the years I repotted them and they grew happily. Their blooms were beautiful but whenever we had hurricanes approach, I had to schlep them and their stands (after evicting any resident lizards) into the house along with the patio furniture. Each of those suckers weighed between fifteen and twenty pounds and had to be lifted into the house over the eight inch step from the patio. I finally decided that the joy they brought was outweighed by the added time needed for hurricane preparedness. Luckily my husband works with a woman who is an avid gardener, so they went to a good home.

    Of course I kept some cuttings to start new plants, but I think these will be given away eventually.

    My oldest house plant is a descendant of a bromeliad I brought home from work twenty nine years ago when it was removed. The original plant bloomed and sent off baby shoots that I repotted and gave away, so now I’m down to one manageable plant that is blooming right now while sending off a baby.

    I do not plan to take my plants for walkies as they live quite happily on our covered lanai along with an orchid my neighbor gave me. They get the subtropical, diffused light and therefore do not suffer from air conditioning or heating problems – a definite benefit for lazy me.

  12. I opened the windows by the house plants so they are getting a nice breeze.

    Earlier today I visited two local pick your own blueberries centers and picked an additional 16 lbs of blueberries to add to the 14 lbs I picked last weekend. I am hoping that’s enough to last me until next year. I went through 28 lbs last year and ran out in May. In case you are wondering what I do with all those berries; I put them in my oatmeal every day; I bake with them; and sometimes I just eat a handful when I want a snack.

    1. What I have been doing with blueberries this year is stepping on them. Lately it seems that every time I open a package one tries to roll away to freedom. Since they are fast little suckers, I often miss one or two when I try to recapture them.

    2. I hope they were of the high bush variety and not the kind were you have to bend over. That would be quite a chore. Also freezer space. I’m feel lucky if I can put a couple of pints in the freezer and call it a day. But blueberry muffins in January made during a blizzard, there you go.

      1. They take precedence over everything else. Lol.

        I wish I had a separate freezer but the only place I have room for one is in the basement, which is a no go. I’ve been flooded twice since I bought this house and nothing goes in the basement except the furnace (raised) an on demand hot water heater (on the wall, this is the second time I had to replace everything so I went with the more expensive, but higher up heater) and a washer and dryer (also elevated). There aren’t enough raised outlets for an additional appliance.

        1. We have new electric outlets installed where we need them. Amazing the transforming convenience. I’ve gone on to outdoor water sprockets. Not hauling heavy resistant hoses is a transforming convenience too. Outlets! I’m all for ’em.

          As for walking houseplants, the plants I acquired at nurseries this week (still doing fairy garden research, dammit) were walked from nursery shelf to car, THROUGH THE HOUSE, and out into the garden where they currently repose.

  13. Heat hit and all my tomatoes died. I haven’t looked in a bit, so I’m actually dreading my patio right now….

  14. I went to an annual arts festival in my town, located in one of the prettier parks. I took myself for a walk near plants. I have no house plants, so today’s activity want exactly spot on.

  15. My alias should be Jenny-the-orchid-killer. I’m currently hovering over one, a gift from my daughter-in-law, that said it was too dry. Now it’s turning yellow at the leaf tips from too much water. Please cross your fingers for my poor plant!

  16. One of my boys gave me an orchid plant for Mother’s Day of which I promptly killed off the flowers. The only thing left are the leaves, bright green, so there may be some hope left. If I transfer it into a larger pot and stay away from watering it too much I think it could be saved.

    1. You may not need to transplant it: I should check first. I think they prefer quite small pots – depending, of course on what kind of orchid it is. My mother loved orchids (they’re not my thing), and hers thrived by being plunged into a bowl of water every X number of days (10? Every two weeks?? Could’ve been weekly). I’m not that organized. They lived on an east-facing kitchen windowsill (i.e., semi-shade).

  17. Not big on houseplant walking, but several years ago when we did a temporary cross-country move one plant got to ride in the car with us.

    Along with our son, our dog, our cat, and our needed belongings for the trip. The plant had been a wedding gift, hence the primo treatment. So it didn’t get to go for a walk, but it did see at least 5 provinces:)

  18. When I was in boarding school, college, and grad school, I carried a big diffenbachia along with me. Now, some 50 years later, I mostly tell my indoor plants that I will put them out on the deck some day.

    Otherwise, the garden plants travel a lot. I’m building gardens of native, pollinating perennials. That means giving away the non natives: pachysandra, lilies, Rosa rugosa, ajuga, hosta , lady’s mantle, vinca, and many more healthy plants. In return, folks drop by jack-in-the-pulpits, bear berries, and cacti (yes, Massachusetts has a native cactus). Sharing is great, and the plants seem to enjoy the changing scenery.

  19. Ironically, although I have a huge veggie garden, I don’t do well with house plants. I have killed spider plants, which are pretty tough. Of course, the cats don’t help. (And limit my house plant choices to those that aren’t poisonous to cats).

    I did, however, have ice cream, so I feel like I have the day well in hand.

    1. Spider plants and cats: when I had roommates with kittens I had a spider plant hanging over my desk. (Somehow I managed never to water my computer.) I watched many determined kittens leap into the air from the top of the printer to grab a piece of spider plant leaf. This eventually led me to taste a leaf. They’re sweet!

    2. We have a spider plant that’s at least 39 years old–I found it hanging in the window of my first apartment. About 15 years ago I decided it was ready for the compost heap, and my husband jumped to the rescue. Now the original plant sits next to his reading chair, and our kitchen windowsills and counters and part of the table are filled with its offspring.

  20. Take Your Houseplant For A Walk Day?!? That is outside of enough! Isn’t it already pampering the flora that I water them in the nud? (That’s how Nobby says it, innit?) The naked gardening thing, I mean. Bedamned if I’ll carry the things around to show the neighbors. As is, Jen suggests I take a walk after I get home… at half past midnight or thereabouts, to avoid the heat of the day. Now I’m picturing wearing a yoke with a pot hanging from either end. In the dark. With a fluorescent orange vest and a lighted ball cap. What do I do if I run into another nocturnal neighbor, and they ask me what kind of plants they are? “Er… green?”

    It’s not like I speak to the little rascals, except for the one that tinkles on my top desk glass when I water him, and I can’t repeat what’s said in those cases, anyway. The dotter has entrusted these to me (because I have a window and sun shines through it), and I water them weakly (and weekly, more or less) except for the succulent, who makes do with the moisture from my exhalations… as near as I can tell. If any need re-potting, that will be the dotter’s task, since they are All Her Fault.

    As for ice cream, did you not post that July is Ice Cream month? I’m hoarding that last Breyers Chocolate Ice Cream Cup for a more special occasion. However, I’ll be finishing off the five-pack of Snickers Ice Cream Bars I bought yesterday in a few minutes.

  21. I have philadendrons (can’t kill) and a few other plants. Since I’ve been stuck at Mom’s, a neighbor has been caring for them. They have never looked better. I either forget to water or water too much or water too often but not enough.

    I am off to Vegas for a business trip on Thursday, just in time for a grasshopper invasion! Vegas isn’t my scene, but I will have Saturday afternoon and evening free to go exploring. In my air-conditioned car!

  22. I have a black thumb — I MEAN well by them, but they take one look at me and shrivel — so today was genealogy day. I tell myself that in 1800, 95% of the population were farmers and their families (it took 95 people on farms to provide enough surplus food to support 5 urban people who may not have been farmers, but who likely had a vegetable garden and a few fruit trees behind the house). So that counts for plants.

  23. Our house plants used to go out on the deck for the summer, but they got bigger and we got lazier. Some are still small enough to move, but I think the ones that are too big would get jealous, and it wouldn’t be fair to them (any justification is good enough for lazy people)

    I did eat ice cream though, which is unusual for me.

  24. I am tiptoeing into easy-care plant ownership (historically black thumb). I just got home from buying a plant and a pot (which I walked from the car to the house). All before I’d even read about the “holiday”! So I am way ahead for once.

  25. If my mom kept a plant alive I could kill it; if it dies from overwatering though…totally in my wheelhouse. I nurture that, which thrives on neglect.

  26. The plant next to my desk has woven itself through the lace curtain. I refuse to walk a curtain.

  27. I was away from home (stlll am) so my houseplants will have to walk themselves.

    I did have ice cream before dinner today. I’m a big fan of ice cream.

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