Last night I threw out my little chamomile plant that I got at the Botany Club sale in the spring. It was completely brown and droopy and dead, in every sense of the word. I hummed “Taps” as I solemnly tossed it into the dumpster. With it went all my dreams for it – the tea I could have made, the good times we could have had together.

My schefflera, Charlie, is growing at a 45-degree angle toward the window, like it’s trying to escape. It is mostly alive, but the fact that it looks a little dumb is undeniable. I’m ashamed of it, and I think it senses that. (WHY, Charlie? What happened to us?)

My friend Andrew left three of his plants in my care over the summer, which was unwise. He was fully aware of my plant-slaughter capabilities. One of them, a short, squatty flower, is completely faded and crunchy. I haven’t thrown it out yet because maybe Andrew wants it back. I don’t know. A pot of seedlings he left is bravely soldiering on, pale and faded, but living. The one that he apparently cares about the most, his sweetpea plant, is dead and its ghostly leaves haunt my dreams. I haven’t told him about this yet because I know that he will be even more despondent than I. I cannot bear that thought.

Rachel has a plant that I’ve always been scared of. I don’t know what it’s called, but it’s huge and the stems are translucent, which is the main reason why I don’t trust it. (I think even googly eyes wouldn’t help.) Last week it mysteriously dropped ALL of its leaves, which makes it even more terrifying. It has dropped every effort to appear friendly. I try to avoid sitting with my back to it.

I don’t understand – how can plants hate me when I love them so?

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