Judy Spooner Viewpoint: Don’t judge the names of these house plantsMaybe people who love their gardens as I do don’t name their plants but they feel a kinship with them as they water them, take off the flowers past their prime and admire them.
By: Judy Spooner, South Washington County Bulletin
Last week, I was looking in the freezer for vegetables to add to an omelet and found a bag labeled “Jesus, Pedro, Alejandro and Jose.”
I was puzzled until I remembered they were peppers that I harvested from a pot on our deck. Daughter Margie named them after they were planted.
When the blueberry bushes were planted, she named them Eleanor and Franklin. I stored them in the garage for the winter and replanted them this year.
Maybe people who love their gardens as I do don’t name their plants but they feel a kinship with them as they water them, take off the flowers past their prime and admire them.
It’s easy for me to feel that kinship. I have a highly active imagination and loved to play with dolls as a youngster. I have a collection of more than 80 dolls that I share my sewing room with. I talk to them and they never tell me anything I don’t want to hear. But Margie’s kinship is mainly with plants.
This year, we pulled out the diseased bushes in front of our house and intended to plant some healthy ones, but Margie persuaded me not to replace them and instead put down rocks and add more potted flowers.
I bought a wooden bench where I can sit among the plants and I’ll move them around next year, like living room furniture.
You see, the cosmos don’t like being with other plants. They’ll smother any plants you put in their pot. Last year, I put them with some daisies and thought I heard cosmo complaints and the daisies weren’t very happy either.
Margie loves cucumbers, and this year I planted seven of them with two pepper plants. She named the peppers Jose and Alejandro. “They’re lawyers and the cukes are Les Brown and his Band of Renown.”
The three dahlias are Patty, Maxine and LaVerne (The Andrew Sisters) who will wear the flowers in their hair like they did in some ’40s movies.
There are four tomato plants and Margie wanted to name them after military generals. Since I’m reading original research about World War II in the Pacific where my dad served, I suggested admirals Nimitz and Spruance. She selected generals Eisenhower and MacArthur for the other two but son-in-law Eric said they didn’t get along so she re-named MacArthur to General Colin Powell.
I also planted seven Asiatic lilies, a last minute decision because I don’t have a landscape plan.
“The lilies are taller than the other plants,” I said. “We could name them after Supreme Court judges.”
“There are nine judges,” Margie said, while watering Les Brown and his Band of Renown.
“Then we’ll just add two of the hanging plants,” I said. “They’re in the same flower bed on the shepherd’s hook.”
On Sunday I planted four black zucchini plants in pots on our deck.
“They’re the Mills Brothers,” Margie said.
The name isn’t very politically correct, I contended.
“That’s OK,” she said. “They’ll let us know if they don’t like it.”