Dear Plants, Flowers and Other Greenery

Dear Plants, Flowers and Other Greenery,

I am writing this letter to clarify why I repeatedly purchase you and subsequently kill you. I want you to know that these are not, in fact, my actual intentions. I love plants and flowers and greenery of most kinds. However, as I was watering my wilted basil plant this morning, my eyes fell to the dried-up, dehydrated and dead mint plant I had purchased only a month ago, and I realized that you probably think this is purposeful.

I cannot even begin to fathom the horror you feel when I walk through your section of the store.  I’m sure you’ve heard the legend about my herbicidal mania and the excitement I feel when I am able to torture and kill plants of every variety.  I can almost hear the quiet hush that settles over you as I walk the aisles, carefully choosing my next victim.  You know what will happen if I pick you, so I’m sure you do your best to look partially wilted or eaten up by bugs.  When I choose my next victim, the rest of you probably sigh in a mixture of relief that you weren’t picked and horror for whoever was.  You know the fate of the plant in my hands, and it isn’t pretty.

The above paragraph is a story which many of you probably believe.  I want to dispel that myth if at all possible.  Yes, I do repeatedly purchase plants, and those plants do end up dehydrated or over-watered or sunburned or eaten up by a variety of bugs.  However, none of this in intentional.  I actually do make an attempt to keep every plant I purchase alive for as long as possible.

I know the fact that I keep doing the same thing repeatedly probably makes it seem as if I am covering up my nefarious intentions.  The fact that I managed to kill an aloe plant, bring it back to life, and kill it again probably compounds the struggle you may face in trusting me.  But, I assure you, no harm done to any plant in my hands was purposeful.

Yes, removing an aloe plant from the soil in which it lived and placing its roots in a jar of water for two months may have seemed akin to the torture used to exact information from insurgents, but I promise I was just trying to revive it.  And, yes, placing a shade begonia on my balcony in Texas in the middle of July for days without water or any human contact probably appears to be the act of a crazed sadist, but I simply forgot about the plant entirely.  I wasn’t intentionally causing it harm; it was merely neglect.

That is what many of the plant deaths boils down to, Plants, Flowers and Other Greenery.  You are different than a dog or a cat who will bark at, sniff or claw the heck out of me if I don’t feed them.  You aren’t like a car with a Check Engine light or even like a shoelace which, when untied, will annoy me by flopping about until I tend to it.  You are silent and passive, waiting for me to remember to water you and give you appropriate amounts of sunlight, which is something I simply have a hard time doing.

This is no fault of your own.  You are just being true to your planthood.  I do take sole responsibility for every plant whose life my irresponsibility has claimed.  But, I just want to know that these deaths have not occurred because of a sick a twisted mind; they are simply the result of a girl who forgot them in their quiet ways.

Please don’t paint me as a sadist to your friends and children.  A poor soul who can’t seem to learn that she can’t keep plants alive, perhaps, but not one who enjoys the torture and death of greenery.

Sincerely,

Chelsea

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About Chelsea

"Hey, they say you're a natural. True or false?" "I just..." "Answer the question." "True, I guess." "Correct." -Ash and Kristofferson (Fantastic Mr. Fox) I allegedly have a way with words. I'm testing this theory. Right. Now. View all posts by Chelsea

2 responses to “Dear Plants, Flowers and Other Greenery

  • Chad Newton

    I must say, “herbicidal mania” is clearly the linguistic highlight of this posting. Thank you for that. And sorry about the plants. I’m sure they don’t mind.

    • Chelsea

      They may. I have literally killed every plant I’ve ever owned, save for my second aloe plant, which I just ignore. Any time I show it any sort of attention by watering it or whatever, it looks sickly. I spent over a year trying to nurse my first aloe plant back to health after its roots dried up. I would play music for it while I was gone because I had read a study that said that encourages plant growth. I talked to it, I watered it appropriately, I noticed it did better in rooms with people talking, so I moved it to my family’s kitchen…and it still died. So, this one I ignore until I burn myself and need aloe. Things seem to work better that way.

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