Anyway, when my thoughts shifted to Spring, I started my annual look around the house to see what projects needed to be done. I have my list. I have my highs and lows, too.
On the low list is the loss of all but four of my formerly 25 orchid plants. It did not happen over night, but over the last few years. First, I battled mealy bugs. I was diligent. I finally eradicated them, but not before they took their toll in orchids, about half.
I thought I had been triumphant until the day that scale showed up. I have no idea where either bug originated. With the scale, I am guessing it was either a new plant or potting soil, but once they arrived they were like the house guest that does not know when to leave. And they haven't.
I really thought that they were gone late last summer. I threw out a kalanchoe that was covered in scale. I cut a few shoots off first, treated them for scale and rooted them in water. Then I potted them up. They were fine. They started to bloom a couple of weeks ago. And then, one morning, I woke up and they were drooping over and, guess what, covered in scale. WTF? Where did it come from again????
I pitched the entire plant. I found another orchid that was shriveling up. After carefully checking and chucking, I was left with four orchids. This is what it used to look like in my living room:
Actually, with a grandson always trying to get his hands in the plants, it will be quite a while before I even consider any more orchids or anything else. That being said, there are a few highs in the plant department.
Back in the early seventies a small plant and flower store opened in Greektown in Detroit in what would eventually be known as Trapper's Alley. I purchased an Hoya plant. I still have it:
Last year it started to bloom again. See, I do have a bit of a green thumb.
And I am happy to say that I have finally managed to keep a rosemary plant through the winter indoors. I've killed many in the past, though maybe I shouldn't pat myself on the back too soon.
I also have this peace lily that I kept from my father's funeral in December, 1980. I had to divide it several years ago, but it still goes on.
And then there is my Areca palm, which not only thrives, but has bloomed several times. The plant was given to me as part of a plant collection after my 'shattered leg' accident in 2007. [Everything else in the pot, save one croton, died, :-( ]
So, even if Mother Nature won't hurry up and bring us Spring outdoors, I can still feel like Spring indoors.
And since I am indoors, yesterday, while out shopping for some toys for my grandson (to keep him out of flower pots), I spotted a deal on my favorite china pattern. Believe me when I say I do not need any more dishes. BUT, my everyday set is the same one I bought in 1970 when I got married. It was chosen by my husband and, of course, is the kind of design a man chooses, no flowers.
And damn if it still doesn't look like new. Disgusting. I still have all eight of the original dinner plates too. It's like it is made out of some indestructible material.
So, I loaded my cart with eight new plates. And eight salads. And eight fruit bowls. And eight mugs. They didn't have soup bowls so I will have to order them. I can't tell you how excited I was to come home and clean out the kitchen cabinet for the new china.