Am I alone in chatting to the plants in my garden? Surely not. Anyone who passes a trailing rosemary bush on a daily basis will attest to its cheerful grandmotherly demeanor, while those who deal with roses must have noticed their devious sense of humour, not often noted in the saccharine depictions of roses on Valentines Day cards. Maybe that’s just the ones at my place, or perhaps my poor pruning technique, but still… I’m pretty sure I’m onto something here.
Then there’s the bay tree. It’s got a very distinctive character, a sort of dignified disdain and unwillingness to participate in my feeble human ways. So what if I want to make a soup with several bay leaves? I can only have one, and I should be ashamed of myself for thinking otherwise, even though there are healthy leaves aplenty. I suspect there’s some wisdom of economy in this. Maybe the reason the leaves are so healthy is because I don’t pull too many of them off.
Other characters don’t seem to want anything to do with me. For example, I’ve never been able to bring myself to buy iris plants, because they always seem to be laughing at me whenever I see some at the nursery. Even when they’re dormant, I can’t help but get the feeling they don’t think much of me. Maybe we could get along if I just sucked it up and tried growing some, or maybe they’d cackle evilly at me and introduce some weird pathogen into the soil. I’ve already got those cheeky roses to contend with, after all, and if the irises got the roses on side then all hell could break loose. I’m just lucky that the rosemary is on my side, and the bay tree is neutral.
It’s also entirely possible that I’m losing my marbles, and that plants don’t communicate with humans at all. I feel like that’s not the case, but I’m open to the possibility.