Suddenly Succulents!

Beware of vicious guard cacti.

Beware: Vicious Guard Cacti.

I went out onto my patio to water the plants yesterday. It was midday and I hadn’t watered for a day or two so they really needed it.

As I was reaching overhead to water the hanging pepper pot the one of the landscaping guys from the apartment complex happened by.

“Good Afternoon.” He said. “You are having good day?”

“Afternoon. Yes, thanks.” I smiled and nodded.

“You not water too much?”

I wasn’t sure what he meant by this. Maybe he thought I was giving the pepper plants too much water. I wasn’t sure how I could explain that the hanging pepper-pot would drain extra water out the bottom so that it would be impossible to overwater the plants even for a black-thumb-of-death type gardener like myself.

“Um, no? Not too much?” I said.

“It like nopal. You know? Nopal?”

Wait I know this! I thought- nopal= cactus! I’ve seen it in the grocery store!

“Yes- cactus?” I hazarded.

“Yes! Cactus! You like?”

I wasn’t sure where this was going so I nodded and smiled and he seemed happy with that and went on his way.

By this time my water bucket was empty and I was due for a shower so I retreated back into the apartment. Being the kind of person I am I usually try to refill the bucket for watering my plants while I wait for the shower to warm up so that I don’t waste too much water so I figured I might as well kill two birds with one stone.

After showering I took the now-full bucket back to the patio and discovered to my surprise a potted cactus sitting on the patio wall. The Landscaping Guy didn’t seem to be around. Was this a gift? Was this something he was trying to sell? I wasn’t sure.

“There- you like?”

Landscaping Guy was back, smiling and pointing to the cactus.

“It’s very nice.” I said. “Where is it from?”

“We doing landscaping for lady in town- she didn’t want them- too many.” Landscaping Guy explained. “You want more? We have more. In the truck.”

What the hell? I thought. Why not?

“Sure.” I said.

I walked over to where the truck was parked on the far side of the complex. There was a tub in the back with several pots of cactuses in it of various sorts. Landscaping Guy retrieved one of these.

“See? Too many.” He pulled out a small potted succulent from inside the larger pot. It looked like something that would grow in a Mario Brothers’ world. The larger pot was full of smaller potted plants that had evidently been bought and then discarded.

“You want?”

“Sure!” I said. I’d never had a cactus before and these were adorable.

“Here- these and these.” He pulled out two larger cactuses and the pot full of the smaller succulents. “Ok?”

“Ok.” I said. “Thank you!”

We walked back to the apartment and stacked all the pots on the patio wall. The patio garden suddenly had twice as many plants as it had before and was going to require some reorganizing. Suddenly, instead of being an experiment in tomato and basil growing it had become a proper little patio garden.


~ by Gwydhar Gebien on May 25, 2013.

One Response to “Suddenly Succulents!”

  1. I love it! Succulents are so neat, they have so many varieties and require little water. What an unexpected treat! 🙂

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