Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Green Thumb

I certainly cannot say that I have a green thumb, because I don't. But....what I do have is patience. Not sure if that counts for much, but I try. I wonder exactly how many people actually keep their plants alive. Does anyone know? Or am I the only one that seems to be incapable of caring for a plant?

I haven't updated about Matilda lately, mainly because there wasn't much to say or if there was I didn't want to share. But now I'm ready to catch you all up on her happenings.

You see Matilda usually sits right on my desk and sunbathes most of the day. I am careful to water her every two days, and just the right amount of water too. That took time to practice, but I'm confident in my water-feeding skills now. Anyways, last month, Matilda had a scare. Yes, it was all my fault too. You see, I called in sick on a Friday because I wasn't feeling well. And usually on Fridays, I always water Matilda because I have the weekends off, and I always move her from her spot in the windowsill to the corner of my cube that doesn't get much sun. I do this because I want to avoid her getting dehydrated.

Well, that's exactly what happened last month. When I got back to the office on Monday, it was not a pretty site. Not only was Matilda's soil dry as a bone, but all of her beautiful green leaves had wilted and were crunchy! Like, the kind of crunchy that is basically the kiss of death. I was SO sad. Why? Because, Matilda is the only plant that I have successfully tried to keep alive.

I am so bad at the whole plant thing, that I have even killed a cactus before. (When I was little I thought I could grow my own garden full of like flowers and vegetables, only nothing ever grew. Turned out I tried to plant the seeds in gravel. haha.) But, for the cactus incident--I take full responsibility. I originally got the cactus as a team-building gift, something about how we can see change grow or something lame like that. Anyways, I was in school at the time, where it basically wasn't sunny for pretty much most of the school year. So, I figured, my best chances of getting the catcus to survive the winter was to put it in my bathroom's window, so that if there was some light, it would catch it there. Only, I didn't think that I would forget about said plant and not even water the thing. When I finally remembered it was there, it was so dead that its spiky parts weren't even pokey anymore. That's how dead it was.

But I digress. Back to Matilda. Her leaves were sad and dead-looking, and so my first reaction was to water her like crazy, but then I remembered that I had read somewhere about the danger of root rot, which is caused by over watering. So I carefully gave her the allotted amount of water, and put her in the sun. Because she's scared me before like this but never have her leaves looked so dead. By the afternoon there was no change. I was beginning to think that I had killed her completely. And here I had been doing sooo well too. So, in a fit of impatience, I took a pair of scissors and started cutting. I cut off all of her dead leaves, and for those stems that were completely beyond repair, I plucked them out. I'd like to say that I was just doing maintenance but the real reason was that I didn't want to stare at her dying right in front of my eyes. I couldn't take it. It was like a constant reminder of how bad I am at this whole keeping-a-plant-alive mission. So, needless to say after I got through with her "maintenance" she looked really plain and basically was leafless. Throughout the week, I kept her in the sun, watered her the right amount, but she still looked really sad. At this point, I was seriously seriously seriously debating on going to Sunflower Market and buying another one just like her. I figured, no one would know...I mean only I would. But that's where I stopped that idea. I would know, and this is the only plant that I've kept alive, why not stick it out? So I did.

And, I'm happy to report that Matilda is doing well....she's doing so good that she....has a new pot! Yes, I finally transplanted her this past weekend. She doesn't have any new blooms yet, but her leaves are strong and healthy, and I think she'll enjoy her new home. It was about time--her roots were literally growing out of her old pot. I'm just proud of myself for keeping her alive this long! It's a record!

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