Archive for the ‘December’ Category

When it comes to decorating my house at Christmas there are always some decorations that are associated with some great memories. The pinecones collected while on camping trips with various friends, the miniature birdhouse tree ornaments made by a friend who has since passed away, the handmade wire and glass decorations that spell out the word joy made by yet another close friend all have special memory associations as I decorate my tree. There are even miniature watering can tree decorations that were a gift from a favorite ex-boss of whom I have very fond memories. One of my favorite kitchen ornaments consists of animated cooking snowmen given to me by an ex-coworker turned friend. Even the BB King licence plate that was a souvenir of a concert I attended with my husband sits on a burlap runner on the mantle surrounded by minature trees and a string of lights. As I decorate my house I feel blessed to have these people in my life and for the memories they have given me.

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December 2013

Posted: December 1, 2013 in December
December Guerilla GardenerKilling Poinsettias 

Some people complain that their poinsettias die before Christmas is over.
I actually have the opposite problem… they just keep on growing.  Don’t get me wrong, I love having poinsettias everywhere during the Christmas season but after Christmas it’s off to the compost heap! Some Master Gardeners may think I’m heartless, but as a Guerrilla Gardener I prefer to think of it as sensible.
It’s like that holiday guest who just doesn’t know when to leave after the parties over. It’s hard to be a gracious host while you’re throwing them out the door, but in no way should you feel guilty.
There are those people who will try to talk you into keeping it because it’s a living thing. They will try to convince you that it’s plant homicide and that with a little TLC you can make them bloom again.
The reality is I’M NOT going to go through whatever it takes to get them to bloom. I’m going to let my poinsettias know that the Christmas Season is officially over on Jan. 5 (the 12th day of Christmas) and they should plan on joining the neighbours live Christmas tree out on the curb.
If they refuse to die so I can justify throwing them out, I’m going to start them on the slippery slope to the compost pile by trying a few of the following things:

1– I’m going to sit them right next to the door on the coldest day of the year and leave the door open so they gets lots of drafts.

2– If that doesn’t work I’m going to put the pot over a heat register where the hot, dry air from the furnace will really speed up the leaf dropping process.

3-I’m going try to water them every day and let water accumulate in the foil wrap –drown you scarlet plants drown!

4– If don’t get around to watering, I’m going to allow them to dry out completely-note: this has ultimate leaf drop potential.

6– I’m told another sure fire leaf dropping combination is to put them in a dark corner (poinsettias love sunlight) right next to a hot fireplace-can you say potential fire hazard!

5– If the leftover Christmas eggnog kicks in I might set a plant at the curb (in front of someone else’s house) with a sign: “Master Gardener please save me!”

7-I might just share the responsibility-I’ll guilt the person who protests throwing it away into taking it home by saying “but if you don’t take it home it will just end up in the garbage

8– I’ll kill them with kindness –I’ll asphyxiate them by putting the shipping sleeve back on!
Note: Varieties with light green leaves tend to drop their leaves more quickly than poinsettias with dark green leaves.

9-Or I might take them out for a drive- I’ll put them in a cold, unheated car, make a few shopping stops, leaving the poinsettias in the car to cool down several times during the course of the day. Guarantees leaf drop within hours of getting home.

10-If it still has blooms after Christmas-I might just re-gift it on New Years Eve to the person who gave me one of those Walmart fruitcakes (or some other unsuitable gift) for Christmas.

Note: If your goal is to keep poinsettias alive during the Christmas season avoid doing any of the above mentioned things!

Then to commemorate my loss I’m going to buy bright spring plants for the places in my home formerly occupied by the late poinsettias.