I woke up from a very disturbing dream this morning. My mom was living with me, and I had decided to move out. She was peeved, but that's mostly because she had to start paying the rent. I had lined up all my plants to decide what to take with me; basically, I wanted to take anything that hadn't died and leave the rest with my mom. I am a grateful son.
While packing each plant individually into some sort of vehicle (it was the amorphous thought of a vehicle, not necessarily a real one--I couldn't tell you how far away it was, whether it was a car or a truck, or anything else.), somehow, one of the plants went missing. My mother had stolen it, I knew in the dream, as one just knows in dreams. I asked her if she had seen it. She was doing something in her room. Her back was to me, and she kind of flippantly said, without even turning to look at me, "Oh, I don't know, you have so many anyway." I looked at the bench in her room; it was piled with clothing. I peeked behind it--the plant I was looking for (a rex Begonia, it was, for some reason) had been unceremoniously thrown behind the bench, with the crime hidden by the pile of clothing. The plant had died in the few minutes this hide-n-seek took. My mother was highly unapologetic.
I don't fault her. Y'know. Because it was a dream. I still told her that I heart her. But it was a little hard to say. (Wasn't there an episode of Friends when Phoebe wouldn't talk to Joey [or one of the guys...?] because of something he did in a dream she had? I'm not that bad...)
Now, to a completely unrelated story! Last weekend, I volunteered for the Potomac Bonsai Festival at the National Arboretum. I didn't have cash on me, and I intentionally avoided the plant vendors. Had I browsed, I would have had to seek an ATM for cash and to find some space in my living room. I have little of either right now, so I felt it prudent to avoid the stock.
I did, however, wander through the show after I finished volunteering (checking people in for the beginner bonsai class). The bonsai that interested me in particular were mostly not bonsai--they were just naturally small plants grown in cute little containers. I'm still unsure about how I feel about bonsai. Clearly, I don't have much of a problem torturing plants (growing them in suboptimal conditions). I'm more of a crafter than an artist, and I think a level of artistry that I don't really have is necessary to create and fully appreciate bonsai. I guess I look at bonsai like I look at having children--I think it's off-putting and I'd never go through the hassle myself, but for those who want to, go right ahead! Your children will reward you with strange dreams they have on Mother's Day.
This was my favourite of the show. Because it's so frikkin' cute, and even edible! Once could easily do this at home, I'm certain, and I might try shortly with some strawberries from my community garden (after they're done bearing!).
This was a cutie, too. I'm starting to appreciate the appeal of Hostas, but I definitely don't have room out of doors to grow them. Little varieties, such as this "Cracker Crumbs," might just do for me in my living room! I have read conflicting information about the size of the mature plant, but it seems 12 to 16 inches is about right. Indoors, in a pot, it would likely be smaller.
And, of course, a real bonsai. Considering the time of year, an azalea makes sense. A lot of them were still in bloom around the Arboretum--I took a little bike ride around and looked at them. Having grown up in this area, they seem kind of passé to me, but I can totally understand their appeal. Having them as bonsai increases that appeal to me, because it makes something commonplace a little more interesting. But, again, interesting isn't always good: I reference the comparison with children above.