I’m not a big gardener. I don’t mind it, and I’ve helped Pig in the garden more times than I can count, but I’m just not good at it. I have had a few plants, but none of them live long. A lavender plant was given to me when I was 14, I think, and I would faithfully spray it with water every few days. Except I didnt rinse out the windex bottle I was using too well, so it died, even after I switched water containers. I mourned. It was pretty and smelled delightful. I buried it in the garden with the hope it’s carcass would nourish whatever was planted there next and appease Mother Nature. (Mother Nature, I’ve learned, is not something to be taken lightly or ignored, as any natural disaster survivor could tell you.)
A few years later, I got a Peace Lilly from my Biology teacher Mr. Waddell, and I was determined to keep it alive. He died in a tragic accident involving a bull not too long after that, and while the whole town mourned, I knew I had to keep the plant alive. Well, it didn’t make it. I went off to college, leaving the plant in what I thought were the capable hands of Pig, but no. A frost got it one winter and it never recovered.
I gave up on plants for awhile. I figured it wouldn’t be a good idea to piss off Mother Nature by killing her babies, so until Spring 2011, I just helped Pig in the garden and dreamed of the day when my plants would live long, green lives. That spring, I was working at Food City, and on my breaks, I would occasionally wander the store. I would always pause by Floral to see what they had for sale. It was usually pretty boring, but one day, they had a carnivorous plants display. I was pumped! I saw it before punching in, then spent my entire 15 minutes picking one out, and, when my shift was over, I was the proud owner of a Venus Fly Trap. It didn’t get much sun in my bedroom window, so it stayed in the kitchen. After only a day, it had caught a stink bug! I was planning on growing it really big and feeding it steadily bigger things until it acquired the taste of human blood, (a la The Little Shop of Horrors) then I would have it attack my enemies. That summer I went to camp, and left it for my mom to care for. When I came back two months later, she had thrown it away because it died. I don’t think she killed it on purpose. I think it committed suicide because it thought I abandoned it.
The only plant that is still living is the air plant my grandad gave me when we went to Florida for Spring Break 2011. (With my parents. Much more enjoyable than one would think. My parents are insanely entertaining.) The only reason that’s alive is because it just requires air and sun. Pretty sure I can give it that easily. Until it dies in a grease fire or falls down the garbage disposal. Then there’s another dead plant Mother Nature will hold against me.
I say all of this because I found a little “Train to Be A Bonsai Master!” kit and I decided to do it. I’m unemployed, so I can have a thousand hobbies, right? Anyway, I kill plants when all they require is water, so I have no idea what possesses me to grow a plant that takes about 20 steps to grow before I even have a sproutling. Bonsai trees always look like ancient gnarly trees that have been shrunk by some weird nature magic, so it’s worth it if I can properly grow one.
When I get a big enough tree, I plan on doing something like what this Bonsai Master does. Mine will never be that intense. I’ll probably just stick a Monopoly hotel next to it with a tiny flag. The trees he works with are amazing, even without the stick mansions. So I suppose that’s my inspiration. I want a bonsai tree that big so I can not do what he does. Actually, I want a whole forest of bonsai trees, so Lego people can play hide and seek in them and take naps in little hammocks that I will lovingly handcraft for them. What Lego person wouldn’t want to chill in a hammock in a bonsai tree?