Monday, June 06, 2011

World Environment Day 2011

The newspapers this morning reminded me that yesterday was World Environment Day 2011 and that India was the host country to boot. Funnily enough, it was yesterday that I picked up some new plants from Aunty D. This morning I spent a happy half hour repotting a few plants, organising the new ones and generally getting good and grubby.

I present to you the fruits of my labours:

Some are old and some are new and one moved into the windy northern corner (not seen in photo) and I am worried about the results of that, but don't my babies look lovely? When I was away in Delhi for a fortnight I worried about the three days overlap between Vicky's departure from Cal and my return home but I found that not only were the blessed things surviving, some were actually doing better for being left to fend for themselves in the nor'westers.

To my joy, the plant whose name I never can remember is flowering beautifully, unfurling several buds each morning. It has taken a while to settle down, so I am quite relieved. I used to have a tree-full of these white flowers greet me outside my bedroom window each morning back in our colony in Vizag.

I bought that white one together with a pink ixora that has never been allowed to bloom by the ants. For some reason, this amused me much more than it upset me, but for all that I am happy to see some viable buds at last. I love ixoras. When we were young Lakshmi used to pull the nectar out and stick it on her tongue.

Aunty D gave me lots of cuttings clubbed in a handful of pots this time. There is a pretty fern and some leaves that I hope will eventually perk up.

And in the far corner I now have a tangle of vines, aloe vera and a money plant in a bottle that seemed to inexplicably die but is showing signs of coming alive now that the monsoons are nearly here.

She also gave me these climbing cactii-like cuttings which I've arbitrarily stuck into existing pots. They carried two snails with them, so I am charmed. (I can afford to be since I hastily gave away the cutting with the large snail on it to my maid. The tiny snail doesn't unnerve me.)

The grande finale of Aunty D's bounty was this pot with some large ferns from Darjeeling. They remind me of my holiday. I haven't found a place for the pot yet so here it is next to Vicky's cupboard.

I rashly promised to take another large pot form Aunty D's and I intend to, too, but I do wonder whether it will be quite safe out on the landing. In any case, there is no room inside our flat.

I've blogged before about my plants dying on me. I've never really worked with pots before and my first tentative forays were disasters. I'm used to large gardens where things grow willy-nilly. This time, only 2 of Aunty D's plants (the first batch) have died and my ixora and the white flower have both settled down. It is immensely gratifying.


R's Mom said...

Wow now thats an inspiration..I got aloe vera as well (Do you really use it for anything?) and that purple leaved that one from Baroda this time :)

Sue said...

R's Mom -- I bought the aloe vera because the man at the stall assured me that it would survive anything. His attitude seemed to say that it would survive even me so I bought it to teach him a lesson. Thus far though it seems hardy enough. Maybe he was right.

The purple leaves and the little green leaves with them were both dying, to my utter chagrin because those are usually stuck on the inaccessible areas and are supposed grow on their own with no help.

The promise of monsoons seems to have cheered them all up.

dipali said...

I must come visit your plants soon!

The Orange Cat said...

This isn't strictly in response to this particular post, but oh well. I'm fine, I just completed my freshman year of college, it looks like I'll be concentrating on critical political theory leading to a major in law. And I got engaged last month.

~G said...

I think the purple leaved one is called Nargis, if it is the one I think it is. Does it have tiny lavender coloured flowers at the intersection of its leaves? Then it is Nargis.

Anil P said...

They sure lend greenery to the open space - the window.

If it's not the ants, it's the birds. The tulsi invariably gets ingested by the sparows - maybe they realise its medicinal value.

Sue said...

Dipali -- Please do. :)

Orange Cat -- That last bit merits a mail, I think, in greater detail, wouldn't you say?

G -- I believe it does, although the flowers are rare. Nargis, you say? What a pretty name.

Anil -- :) It bothered me earlier when the birds and insects nibbled my plants up but somehow it no longer does.

Anonymous said...

Thats a very nice garden. Mustard, methi, cilantro, chillies, mint are easy to grow as well. (The first 4 grow out of seeds in the kitchen). Same for Garlic, Ginger, Green onions etc. Micro greens can be grown without soil. Gardening can be satisfying if one has the time and inclination.

Sue said...

Anon -- I've lost so many plants since this post was written, that I've stopped growing things. Maybe again some day. I like having plants around me.