Almost exactly one year ago (what clear phrasing I've chosen) my husband
gave me an early Christmas present. It was the beautiful oncidium orchid pictured above, with flowers a lot like the ones in the picture below. (Silly me, I never took a picture of it when it was flowering - how was I to know I'd need it for my blog a year later?)
The orchid arrived in bloom with 5 or 6 huge flowers on it, which is why gene gave it to me right when it arrived and not on the 25th, and I was completely smitten. It was a thoughtful gift because I had wanted one for some time, but hardly ever mentioned it. It lasted through Christmas and perhaps New Year's, and then after 3-4 weeks or so the flowers withered and fell. After convincing myself (and gene
) that I hadn't killed it
, rather that it was all according to natural process, I wondered when I could look forward to another bloom. I consulted my Aunt Kristi, who is quite a green thumb
, and she told me they bloom about once a year. BUT - she said - orchids are very hard to care for and I should take care not to water it too much, not to give it too much sun and not to give it air too dry. WHA?? Who knew it was going to be so difficult? Not me, I assure you. I was rather unthoughtful in my gift-wanting.
SO, for the past year I've lived with the (rather minimal) fear
that I would soon kill my precious plant. Even more concerning was the thought that it may never flower again because of some sort of unintentional maltreatment on my part. In fact, I've been counting on both of those things happening imminently. But to my surprise, it has done fairly well. But to my EVEN BETTER SURPRISE, look what I found yesterday!!
Do you see that tiny finger-like projection coming off the base stalk? The regular leaves don't start out like that. The regular leaves are born already creased and they hug the stalk very tightly until they are quite tall. I feel quite confident that this little baby has all the signs of being A FLOWER STALK!!! How this good flower fortune has come upon us, we may never know. But I will tell you this - I have been talking to it every day since I discovered it. Carbon dioxide is good
for plants, right?
So that's what all the excitement is about at our house. As a point of interest, the orchid lives in our bathroom where the shower makes the air tropical and humid, and she -apparently - loves it. She loves it so much that she is giving us a Christmas present - NEW FLOWERS! YAY! From now on I think I'll call her Christmy. Pronounced Kriss-mee. In honor of Christmas! I mean no disrespect to the name of Christ either - in fact, I'm all the more in love with Him because He created such a beautiful thing, capable of giving me such joy.
I will, of course, be keeping you abreast of all floral developments, so stay tuned. Or just keep me in your Google reader. Or whatever.