What Can Plants Do For You?

We’ve learned a lot over the past few weeks, in terms of looking after carnivorous plants anyway, and it’s time to look back and reflect on what this has done for me and why I would encourage all of us to look after all kinds of plant life.

I personally feel that there are 3 key skills which a botanist develops over time and they are:

  • Patience
  • Discipline
  • Humility

Buddhists popularly keep the Bonsai tree, as this helps them on the spiritual path to a higher understanding of our existence – if you believe that sort of thing. They practiced the art of “penjing” or “pun-sai” which means to create a small landscape in a container or pot and in turn, relates to the Chinese philosophical tradition of Taoism.

Google Search: Image of Buddhist and Taoist New Year Display

Taoism is thinking and living in a natural way and less towards the thinking of modern living. Being one with nature, understanding the flow of life and going with the flow are key parts of what Taoism teaches. Even if Taoism and spiritualism isn’t your thing, you can still better shape your own mind as you get to know the world around you.

Google Search: Bonsai Tree

Meeting this with a child like enthusiasm will make your experience invaluable and enjoyable – even if your like me and struggle in the beginning, it will take time but you’ll get there. I will adapt the new found skills I am developing to my own life.

At first it may not sound very useful, or I may not even spot when it is useful but someone who is well humbled and patient will better handle a disruptive colleague at work, or the dissertation paper you are writing will be easier to find its flow. I myself have not got a particular interest in studying Taoism in depth (though now I’ve mentioned it..), however I’m sure harnessing and practicing these skills over time will aid me in many factors throughout life.

Whether it be carnivorous plants, a bonsai, fruits and vegetables or even plain old daffodils, you can find an abundance of pleasure from cultivating the life that has given so much to us throughout the history of our existence and with the increasing worries of human interference on nature – it is vitally important that we all do our bit to give back to our home.

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Urban Issues

It’s been quite a week as I’ve managed to not only solve the distilled water issue, but also brought another addition to the family.

Introducing Nepenthes, Bloody Mary.

The water issue has been solved as I previously thought boiling water would kill chemicals in the water. It appears that I was wrong and this in fact can make the chemicals more concentrated. Yikes!
Instead, I have a tumble dryer at home which collects water vapour from my clothes and deposits this as distilled water, in a plastic compartment in the bottom. Then, I can remove this and pour the water into a small glass/cup for my plants!

A second issue I have is that the windows in my apartment are double glazed and greatly reduce sunlight to the plants – an issue I had not anticipated in the beginning. I’ve now hung up a pot out the front and will need to purchase some more pots for the west side too.

I’ve cut the flower from Hector (Venus Fly Trap) as the plant will spend all its energy trying to produce a flower and I want it to use that energy to thrive into the heads, instead. Even from the above image you can see how much that head on the right hand side is thriving, now I’m hoping it will turn more of a red colour in the coming weeks.

I’d like to look more into the nature of the Nepenthes, whom I shall call Henrietta, and the sacs that it uses to catch prey so I’ll elaborate on that perhaps in the next day or two. I hope these past few weeks have taught you a thing or two, as they have for me, so please do share your own thoughts and experiences if you wish!

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