Monday, 5 September 2011

Why I'm not so good at gardening OR, An admission of lunacy

I am trying to grow avocado trees. I originally thought I'd just do one, but you really need more than one in order for them to pollinate, right? Also, it's too cold here to leave the plants outdoors and depend on bees to pollinate the trees, so I may have to do it myself with a feather or something.

That's assuming I don't kill them first. I'm not the most green fingered of individuals, but I came across a little tutorial on the web about growing them, and it was so cheerful that it made everything seem so simple.

I love the idea of growing my own food and depending less on the local grocery store throughout the year. I realise that living a subsistence lifestyle isn't glamorous by any means, but doing a bit of grow-your-own can't be bad.

My plans entail getting an allotment and owning chickens. I want to grow a mini orchard and have a fence covered in trailing blackberries and raspberries. If we manage to put up a greenhouse, maybe my avocado trees could live there during the summer.

But in the meantime, they are just avocado pits, skewered on four sides, suspended half in, half out, in a glass of water. My job is to keep the water topped up until the roots start growing and then plant them in a pot-o-dirt. I am going to have to refresh my memory by that point, because the tutorial said something about pinching leaves off in order to force more growth, but that sort of thing makes me nervous and makes me sad for the plant who just grew the leaves in the first place.

It's possible that my anthropomorphising of plants inhibits me from being a good gardener. Cut a tree back? Ack! Pull the weeds? Poor guys.

I think it stems from a science fair project I did as a kid wherein I said nice words to some plants and mean words to others and the insulted plants withered away.

Or maybe not. I can't remember for sure.

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