Tonight the snowbirds fly in, exchanging their chilly Arctic Florida weather for the authentic Canadian winter experience. They are coming home for Christmas and the happy festive factors keep stacking up.
They left me on house duty in their absence; home protector extraordinaire, plant caretaker notsomuch! My dad and T pride themselves on their enormous green thumbs and the lush flora and fauna they grow around themselves. They left their favourite sole survivors of the houseplant variety in my care. The instructions were fairly straight forward - water.
I am not sure what went wrong ... I watered like they said; waited 2 weeks then returned to repeat the deed. The Christmas cactus's were still moist and contented. The leafy green monster was wilted and yellow. What the heck?? I skipped her (she was apparently drowning) and watered the rest of the plants. I returned in 2 weeks to find the cactus STILL happy and moist but I watered it anyway and the leafy green monster had turned from wilted yellow to crispy brown. Cr@p! I peeled off the crunchy bits and ate the evidence - and stressed over whether to mention the health of the plant to Pops. I didn't. I'm an optimist with an unyielding confidence that leafy green would turn a corner and reincarnate.
It didn't happen. I slaughtered that plant. Over the weeks after removing the dead, brittle bits we are left with a Charlie Brown Christmas plant of one lone leaf. Last night when I dropped around with some milk and bread and cranked up the heat in the empty nest, I sat on the floor in front of leafy green. She was alive but barely. Pathetic is an understatement. I apologised silently and then scratched a note out ... I miss my mommy and daddy ... and tucked in the very moist pot. She needs tender loving care that only a parent can give. Little sister never lost a plant on her watch so this failure is hard to face.
What can I say ... I am a plantslaughterer, stemkiller, green thumb orphan. Sorry Pops and T. Want the key back???