The mornings first question regarded the state of the jungle which occupies the better portion of the southern section of our apartment. Apparently midweek watering had been overlooked and the result was a room full of very distressed plants silently crying for attention.
For a moment I felt brutal, then I'm grateful for plants lack of vocal cords.
The decision to market cuttings from the jungle at our shop means that it has evolved from a hobby with the side benefit of effective organic air filtration and beautification to monetization requiring more diligent attention.
A cursory examination of the situation leads to the decision to give the entire jungle a right proper autumnal cleaning before watering.
As I trim dry leaves and long dead vines I imagine that for this miniature ecosystem I am quite literally a god of the four classic elements. Warmth from the southern exposure of the apartment and electric heater are fire.
Then as the embodiment of wind, I tear through the jungle like a cleansing hurricane. In the wild these plants would naturally shed dead matter to the weather. Today my embodiment of air-bending is more hands on. By the end of the day this has lead to a million itchy micro cuts, abrasions and more than a few fine cactus needles stubbornly embedded in my flesh.
Like shifting lands, with the strength of the earth I lift and carry jungle specimens to new locales. I wonder if the plants experience these relocations as catastrophic earthquakes?
The thirsty plant babies cry out for hydration, some bone dry with sad leaves that wilt at my touch. They'll have to wait until everything is inspected and cleaned before the watering can jet stream lifts moisture from our kitchen sink and finally sates their drought.
One of the best complements the jungle received was from a visitor a few years back who's son was examining our crop of kittens. She said "You have a nice jungle." I replied modestly. She reiterated, "You don't understand. I'm from Brazil. I grew up in the jungle. When I say you have a nice jungle I mean you have a nice jungle."
I also recall another jungle admirer who confided that it was easier to bend the will of plants than people and therefore found gardening to be a much more rewarding activity. Given the ease with which we clone our specimens, he may have been right.
For a time I imagine am alternate world where the people are like plants. So that every time somebody loses a finger to an industrial accident they are made liable for care of the clone which grows from their severed digit.
I feel like a plant doctor of sorts, or perhaps surgeon is a better term. A pair of kitchen shears and a small serrated paring knife are my instruments. No anesthetic required as I remove a troubled cable tie which once support for a stalk is now digging into bark and causing a series money tree blockage.
When cut, certain specimens emit very distinct odors (including an umbrella tree that's rather piney.) I recall watching a nature documentary on YouTube about how plants communicate via scent when injured. I start wonder if the jungle now fears my presence like some kind of titanic Grim Repear for the botanical set.
Quote of yesterday: "If I had more time I would have written less."