Sunday, January 14, 2007

Am I a gardener?

Carol from May Dreams Gardens has a post on "What makes a gardener?" For Green Thumb Sunday, I thought it would be fun to answer her questions.

1. "Do you consider yourself a gardener? How did you decide you were a gardener?"
Yes, I am a gardener. I realised I was accumulating more and more plants, growing flowers, herbs, plants from seed, rooting various twigs and stems. I never actually "decided" that I was a gardener, it just became obvious after a while.2. "When is the first time you referred to yourself as a gardener? Where and how did you learn to be a gardener?"
I don't really remember when I first refered to myself as a gardener. I got my first plants in Manhatten,NYC more than 30 years ago, when I visited a plant shop. The owner was cutting up little pieces of wandering jew as cuttings, and I asked him what he was doing. We chatted for a while, and he gave me a few cuttings of various plants. That started my house plant craze, where I would get cuttings from friends and aquintances and get free plants. Soon after, I started getting seeds from flowers and planting window boxes. My "garden" soon traveled up the fire escape, and onto the roof, where I planted herbs that I used for cooking. So I started gardening in a New York City apartment, in containers. I learned by doing. I was hooked!

3. "Has anyone ever introduced you to someone else as a gardener?"
Yes, I was know as the plant lady at work, because my office-studio looked like a jungle, with vines and hanging plants and flowers in every empty space! People would give me thier dying or sick plants, and I would nurse it back to health, then give it back, or sometimes they let me keep it.4. "When someone tells you they are a gardener, what image of them does it bring to mind? What do you expect of them?"
I imagine them digging in thier garden, planting seeds in little pots in early spring, maybe some little glass jars with rooting plants. I expect them to have a love of nature and enjoy chatting about plants.

5. "Can a gardener live where there is no place to plant anything, and still remain a gardener?"
YES! Me in the middle of New York Manhatten proves it!6. "What about horticulturalists? Are they a subset of “gardeners” or a whole different group?"
I imagine a horticulturalist is a profesional, a person with lots more knowledge than myself, and knowing all the latin names!

all the pics above are from my time at Don Bluth Studios, in the mid 90s. My office-studio had a nice large window facing south, so was perfect to grow plants.


Blogger Carol said...

Quite interesting, how you became a gardener when someone took the time to show you plants, answer questions, and give you some plants. All gardeners should do the same for anyone who croses their path and shows an interest in plants.

I think you were always a gardener, someone just had to get you started.

Thanks for posting about being a gardener. I need to answer the questions for myself!

January 14, 2007 11:29 am  
Blogger Invisible Shell said...

I remember when all those plants from Don Bluth had to come home and filled the living room with even more plants - now that was a jungle!

January 14, 2007 12:21 pm  
Anonymous Acey said...

What beautiful images of a gorgeous setting!

January 14, 2007 3:06 pm  
Blogger Christa said...

I enjoyed reading this, Salix Tree. Since I live in an apartment in the city, I can relate to your experience in NYC. I have had plants -- lots of them -- on my windowsill in the apartment and that's how I really got hooked on growing things. And then I eventually got a community garden plot a few blocks away so that I could expand my gardening habit outside!

January 14, 2007 3:47 pm  
Anonymous Mrs Lifecruiser said...

So you were the plant nurse huh? *lol* That sounded really nice actually. Having an emergency for plants.

Excellent post, I enjoyed every row of it.

January 14, 2007 5:15 pm  
Blogger Sally said...

Wow your home is amazing and your work place. I love the idea of a plant nurse. Thanks for visiting.

January 14, 2007 9:30 pm  
Blogger Lynn said...

Lovely garden indoors!
Green for the time of hybernation, awaiting March when white blossoms peek first from the earth.

January 14, 2007 10:51 pm  
Blogger Annie in Austin said...

Hi Salix,
It was kind of you to take us along as you revisited your journey through the world of plants... this was such a cool post!

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

January 14, 2007 11:00 pm  
Blogger Colleen said...

I loved reading this post, Salix! And the photas are just wonderful. It's been fun reading everyone's responses to Carol's question. What I'm struck by with this post is the fact that one conversation, with the plant shop owner, started you on your journey. It reminded me to talk to whoever is interested about gardening. You never know---we might very well infect others with our love of gardening :-)

January 15, 2007 12:38 pm  
Blogger rusty in miami said...

Very interesting journey, we all have a story of how we got here. Thanks for sharing it.

January 17, 2007 1:31 am  

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