Thursday, September 07, 2006

My Murderous Ways

A few years ago I planted my Big Lots $1.99 rosebush and every summer it's more and more lush and beautiful. In other words, I haven't killed it yet.

This summer, I planted twelve cheap bargain marked-down rosebushes, each and every one well under $3.50, and none of them is dead yet, either. Four of them are vintage roses of unusual colors and they are really distinctive and cool. And still alive.

Four of them are climbing roses (just like Mary and Colin and Dickon loved so much in "The Secret Garden!!!") and they are, already, all over the trellis Hub made for me. None of them even hints at dying yet.

For about a week, I believed that one of my vintage rosebushes had died but eternal optimism prevented me from digging it up and throwing it into the back of Hub's big green pickup truck where I tend to toss any unwanted items I find around the yard into the woods. It's a good thing I didn't, because it magically sprang back to life after the big rainstorm we had a few days ago. It just needed water; who could know? And it's still alive.

Back in the day, I had a green thumb. Now? I have the black thumb of death, because I can't seem to keep anything alive out in the yard or in the planters. And when Hub brought home all his classroom plants for the summer, plants that had been able to withstand hundreds of high school math students, vacation days of no water, and the constant hum of math lectures, some of them were dead within a few weeks. Flowers prefer math lectures to my humming and conversations with them. This hurts, not a little bit.

But these rosebushes? They give me hope. I have touched them, yet they are not dead. They are blooming and beautiful.

The petunias that I have faithfully watered and talked kindly to and fertilized and dead-headed all summer? Over half of them went all leggy on me and then died. The few remaining are barely speaking to me and look like long bare sticks with a blossom on the end. They don't exactly cringe when I come near them, but they might as well. I do not claim credit for the death of the beautiful little flowers the cat napped on and killed.

Maybe the roses are able to resist the fatal-ness of my care because they are armed with thorns and thus have a means of self-defense, while the petunias and pansies are helpless against my well-meaning eagerness. I don't know; I've never really been into roses until this summer. Now that they know I love them, will they stay lush and healthy?

I won't know until next summer, I guess. But I hope they do. Whenever I see those climbers, especially, I feel so Lilias Craven. . . . but then, look what happened to HER.

Posted by Mamacita (The REAL one) @ 3:21 PM | |


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