Monday, December 18, 2006
Where's the love?
I very much admire the fabulous trio of bloggers at Garden Rant, but I cannot go along with their collective disdain for the humble houseplant.
Even an office philodendron provides air filtration, a welcome spot of green, and a touch of humanity to the manmade environment. Some of my colleagues at work enjoy taking rootings of their spider plants and begonias. Our associate editor is currently using his ficus as the basis of a festive holiday display. It's good to have plants to take care of throughout the year; it reminds us of the interdependence of all living things. (And if that sounds pompous, so be it.) The tending of house or office plants is often the only contact with plants non-gardeners will have.
I maintain a very active indoor gardening schedule at this time of year. There are the paperwhites, hippeastrum, and hyacinths to force; the Christmas cactus to deadhead; the cyclamen to keep watered. As reported earlier, one of our dracaena is blooming and I've been monitoring the progress of a Dizygotheca elegantissima (false aralia) we had outside all summer. True, I mainly just keep the gardenia and jasmine alive indoors—they perform their magic starting in May—but their foliage is a lush promise of the gloriously scented blooms to come. I've had some of my plants for nearly ten years.
A house without plants is just as unthinkable as a house without art, as far as I'm concerned. Both are continual reminders that life—and hopefully thought—is taking place within the walls.
Though a greenhouse sure would be nice.