Plant Parenthood: New leaves

Honestly, there are times when I lose interest in my plants.

I suppose, like any other hobby, there are ups and downs, joys and disappointments. I had forgotten that plants, like people, have their moods and phases. Just as people shed clothes and change hairstyles, leaves die and fall off, often before you even notice new ones growing in.

For the past few months, it seemed like my plants had just stopped growing, that they were dying, as if I were doing something wrong. Because life has been tumultuous, a few of my plants did actually die. (Rest in peace, dill and zinnia) But in recent weeks, I’ve seen new leaves unfurling, new stems standing, as if my plants were coming out of hibernation and saying, time for new life! Such joy, to see bright green leaves on my pothos, to see the golden moa standing tall, to see strong leaves on my date palms. Such happiness to see the amaryllis bulb that I’d halved growing new leaves, and the goosefoot growing long.

It’s a thrill, too, to embark on new adventures with new plants, to figure out what they like and where they’ll thrive, to see them turning their leaves to the sun. I love the connections I build with people when we talk about plant care, about repotting, about sharing our findings and cuttings.

For Christmas, I gave my friends Mary Ann and Trish two bags of soil and three plants each, and I do enjoy hearing about their own adventures in gardening. My mom gave me a kalanchoe, and I’m so happy with its blooms. I bought a poinsettia for Lucas, too.

Perhaps one of the nicest things about gardening is how plants that seemed small and weak just a few months ago now seem large and vibrant, like the papaya and the serissa from Tita Ruby, or the golden moa from Judy. Plants that seemed near death a few months ago are now lush and thick again.

Already I have plans for repotting various plants, and for growing cuttings for Mary Ann and Trish, and for trying to grow flowers. Maybe I’ll even try herbs again soon! Who knows?

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