Tuesday, February 15, 2011

New Obsession

So, I've never really been one for gardening...
I've pretty sure that I've written once or three times about how my poor father used to beg / bribe / bully me and my brothers into helping him with our garden at The Old House. (I call it The Old House now because my parents have just bought a stunning new apartment in Umhlanga and will be moving in a few months.)
He never got it right... No matter how hard he tried, we would sit inside the cool, air conditioned living room, and watch him suffer through the glass patio doors. It just wasn't for us... All that dirt and sun, not the mention the threat of bugs and the odd garden snake. No thanks.
So imagine my surprise to find that, as I grow older, I suddenly seem to be craving plant life in my world. First the herb garden outside my kitchen window which, I must sadly add, I've kind of lost interest in. I have a few long-suffering curry leaf plants that refuse to give up, but the other herbs have pretty much kicked it for one reason or the other. Not all my fault, I swear.
Then came the micro-greens or linseed sprouts that I started to grow on my living room windowsill. All very cute and sweet until I grew tired of the taste of them in my salads and promptly stopped growing them. I might start again with some different seeds this time, maybe mung beans. I saw an interesting method of growing them in a glass jar on the net the other day that kind of interests me... It's part food, part science. I can dig that.
But now my new plant obsession is Peace Lilies or Spathiphyllum. My friend Noodle bought one for her desk a couple of months ago and I was hooked. It was love at first sight. Here's why:
- They have pretty white lilies that I find really cute.
- They are completely indoor plants that require no direct light.
- They let you know when they need to be watered... Bonus!
- They somehow absorb the negative rays that fly off your tv and computer monitor.
- And they pretty much do their own thing while you get on with your life.
I bought one for my desk that had just a single pretty lily on it. The lily is long gone and I've only since discovered that there are flowering types and foliage types. I think my desk one is a foliage Spathiphyllum. It's okay. At first I was a little bummed, but now I realise how lovely it is, even without the flowers and I've resigned myself to loving her regardless. I don't want her to develop some sort of inferiority complex because she can't deliver on my unrealistic expectations...
And the second one I've bought is this one for my home:

She arrived with tons of flowers on, some of which have gone now, but she still looks beautiful. I suspect that she may be more of the flowering variety, but again, I'll be happy with whatever happens. I've read somewhere that unscrupulous store people often pump the plants full of chemicals to make them flower and ultimately move off shelf. Once home, the plants start jonesing for more chemicals and then stop flowering unless you give them their fix. If anyone's going to be doing drugs at my place, it's going to be me... So there goes that idea Spathiphyllum!
We're just getting to know each other, my Peace Lilies and me, and I'm feeling really good about it.