I kill plants.
Not on purpose! You know how some people have green thumbs and anything they touch flourishes? I’m where they get that power. Any plant-growing skills I might have had were siphoned away to make those super-gardeners. But do you know what I haven’t killed yet?
When I was growing up there was a massive wisteria vine in the backyard. It had crawled up half a dozen of the trees that bordered our yard but more importantly, a truly enormous section of it, easily six inches thick, ran parallel to the ground at exactly sitting height. My sister, our friends, and I would climb aboard and pretend we were riding a horse because, thanks to how it clung to the trees, it bounced like a pony. It was awesome.
Even better than the bouncy factor however, were the amazing flowers. Wisteria flowers, for anyone who hasn’t seen them, look like grape bunches. They’re purple and hang in an arrowhead and are absolutely gorgeous. I don’t know that I have a favorite flower but if I do it’d be wisteria. They’re capital-r-Romantic. Maybe it’s just me, but they tend to fire my imagination.
So when Kevin and I bought a house, I was determined to have a wisteria. I even had the perfect place for it. There’s a leaky faucet next to the steps that drips no matter what we do, so I decided to stick a potted wisteria under it and trail it down one of the railings to the front door. Then in the spring it would bloom and be the most gorgeous entrance a house could have.
As luck would have it, American wisteria were put on sale at Lowe’s so Kevin and I biked down and he hauled back an adorable little vine (okay, it was like three feet tall) in the cart. I set it up and MacGuyvered a little shoot when I discovered that the drip couldn’t reach the pot.
Over the summer I added plant food to it semi-regularly (I mentioned I’m not good at gardening, right?) and trained the precious, surprisingly fuzzy, little tendrils over the railing. Because I’m occasionally extremely lucky, the way I wanted to go was in the direction of sunlight so the wisteria didn’t argue.
I even looked up how to take care of an outdoor potted plant over the winter because I am just that dedicated. And now we come to the reason I wrote this post. Apparently what you’re supposed to do is move it under the eaves (check!) and wrap it in burlap to protect it from freezing. (You’re also supposed to turn off its water source which I did through judicious application of pliers and swearing.) Check out what it looks like once all this is done:
Yep! My wisteria is taking a long winter’s nap! I can’t wait to see what it looks like next spring when all the leaves come back. It might even bloom for me!
Anyone else have trouble keeping plants alive? Let’s swap war stories in the comments!
P.S. My manuscript s