Wednesday, October 10, 2007


I've often heard the phrases, "Life began in a garden" and "God is closest in a garden" and blah blah blah!

So, now you know how I feel about gardening. I have never been good at gardening. I have an extremely black thumb. All I have to do is look at some living green thing (I'm not talking about moldy cheese) and it shrivels up and dies. You don't believe me? Just last month my friend, Nadine, told me to take home her potted basil. She said it would go well with my tomatoes and she wanted me to have it. I refused. I told her that it would die in my care. But she insisted. I brought it home, and even watered it, and in two days...TWO was brown. Not a speck of green could be found on that plant. Then there's the times that Amber has brought home little plastic cups of who-knows-what, only to have them sprout up out of the soil and then wither as soon as they saw whose home they were in!

My father-in-law, on the other hand, is the Plant Whisperer. All he has to do is walk by a plant and it stands at attention and immediately produces fruit or veggies or flowers, even in the off-season. I'm not kidding. Papa is the reason our tomato plant is still alive and producing yummy tomatoes. The garden is his and Amber's garden. In the beginning, when they planted the tomatoes, I told him that I wanted nothing to do with it. I told him that it was not good for my self-esteem to see one more plant die on my watch.

So, why am I telling you this? Today I was fuming after yet another battle with my oldest to get her to eat her food. I called my friend, Gina, and she told me that a walk outside in the fresh air helps her calm down. So I decided to go outside and pick some fruit. I picked a few remaining tomatoes and some pomegranates and some beautiful roses. It did help, and I thought to myself, "Maybe there's something to this gardening thing. I think I understand what all those women are talking about when they wax eloquent about getting back to nature." I decided to pull a few vines away from the roses that they had wrapped themselves around. And then...OUCH...I stabbed myself on a thorn! Then another. Then my arms started to itch from rubbing against the scratchy vines. Then I started cursing those women who find gardening such a joy. "Oh, forget this!" I thought, and went inside to put the flowers in water. You see, I'm just not cut out to be a gardener. I never have been, and I never will be. And I'm okay with that. Now I need to go wash the scratchies off my arms!

P.S. I took a picture of what I gathered in the garden, before the flowers wither and the tomatoes go bad! I don't think I can sabotage pomegranates, but you never know!


Michele said...

Oh Christine, I am right there with you. I do however have a desire to garden and occasionally give it another go. Sadly, it always ends in tears. I will say that Michael's gets a lot of business from me in the fake flower department! Maybe just being outdoors will have to be calming enough for you!

frisky said...

My plants seem to live long enough for me to start to enjoy the whole "gardening thing" and I think to myself that I must be good at this after all and then... WHAM! they die on me. Then I go buy more and start all over. I like to blame it on the fickle river bottom weather, though.

ATSmith said...

Fabulous writing! What a funny story and soooo honest. I like how you were kind of into gardening for a moment and then you almost seemed irritated with it (after the prickles). Great picture ... and did Amber end up eating her food?

Christine H. said...

Yes, she finally ate it. It was dinner she didn't eat the night before. Stir fry that she usually likes, but she was just pulling a power-struggle thing. We told her she had to eat it before eating anything else. So, I gave it to her for lunch (I didn't make her eat it for breakfast) and she didn't eat it. She finally ate it while we were eating pizza for dinner that night because she wanted a piece of pizza. Oh my!

Kari Rodems said...

I love gardens..... just not the gardening so much.... dirt and bugs and prickly things... ick! Remember that photo I showed at LD last year about the tree I bought?... It is half dead now... lasted longer than I expected... Oh well... so no grean thumb... you are great at so many other things!!

try2bAsunbeam said...

hehe, that is funny! I always kill houseplants. I even killed the ones that someone gave me telling me "these are IMPOSSIBLE to kill" Well I accomplished the impossible!
When I planted my garden in my new house I said, ok, whatever happens happens. I had a weed that was 4 feet tall that I left in there, cuz I wanted to see what it was! Well, it was a 4ft. tall weed.
I just left it, watered a lot, but did nothing else really. And I was blessed with tomatoes, a million cucumbers (I *wish* they'd die), cantelope and kolorobi...oh, and carrots! I killed the onions, the watermelon, the basil, the parsley...and the beans...So, moral of the story is if you plant enough stuff...SOMETHING will live!! lol