I go to Bunnings and buy a whole pile of beautiful, green, florally plants. I tenderly care for them.
Then, I forget about them.
Not that I neglect them on purpose, I seriously FORGET THEY ARE THERE.
Once you’ve left a new plant alone, unwatered and unloved for a week or so, they don’t look so good.
Then, something will trigger my mind that I’m supposed to be caring for the plants. I’ll suddenly notice one of them, or I’ll wonder why there are random brown leaves in my house, or one of them will gasp at me for water. And I’m stricken with conscience.
So, they get a little more care and attention, they start to revive (although never looking as pretty as they did just before I took them home), until BOOM.
The next bout of plain forgetfulness on my part.
And by the time I remember them again, usually they are dead or dying enough so that there is little point in appeasing them with Seasol, or water or, well, anything really.
I always feel terrible about it. I love to see beautiful lush gardens, strong, green plants and stunning multicoloured flowers. I love to sit in a clearing inside a buzzing, chirping, growing garden. Even though I’m pretty sure the plants surreptitiously shy away from me – “Stay away! That’s the Plant Killer!”
I just don’t have enough Adulting ability to do it myself.
I mean, I don’t even know why it happens. I can remember to feed and water myself, and my partner and my son. Our dogs never go unfed or watered or wormed or flea’d… perhaps it’s just because the only way the poor plants can get my attention is by waving their wilting fronds at me – not being able to scream or cry or whimper, “You’re killing me.”
I’m a murderer. I’m a Plant Murderer.
You should be forced to get a tattoo, or some kind of proximity bracelet when you are a Plant Murderer, so when you go into a nursery or gardening store, they can refuse to sell you plants. Or at least there should be some kind of probation – you have to take a healthy plant into the station every two weeks – “See? I’m doing it! I’m keeping it alive!” (Of course, this might backfire if, in fact, the plants are dead, so maybe my first idea about the tattoo or proximity bracelet was better.)
I even murdered a beautiful orchid I received for a birthday present. It was stunning. And orchids are SUPPOSED to be neglected a good portion of the time. But here’s the thing. Not ALL the time. If you neglect them ALL the time, they die, just like every other plant.
So, if you ever see me cruising around the gardening centre at Bunnings or your local plant nursery, be sure to stop me and make sure I’m not there to buy plants. And if I am, get security to politely but firmly escort me out the door. Because chances are, you will save a life.