The Pot Plant I Didn't Kill
This morning, as Benson-the-Friendly-Puppy and I took our constitutional, we met a tiny girl out walking with her grandpa. The tiny girl was carrying a red plastic spatula.
"Have you been cooking?" I enquired.
"No," replied her grandpa, "She is taking the spoon for a walk."
On a completely different note, last year I planted privet in the pot at the front door, in desperation as I have so far killed everything I have planted there. No morning sun, and fierce afternoon sun has killed many plants so far, and others have been killed off by blight, pest infestation, or gardener neglect (that would be me forgetting to water). But so far, fingers crossed, the privet is thriving. Here is the privet in December 2014:
Here it is today:
It would be several feet higher but for severe and regular pruning. This is the longest I have kept a plant alive at the front door, so hallelujah! I must admit, I have been watering it daily, which obviously helps. I have a jug on the kitchen bench which is exactly the right size to hold all the cold water that comes out of the kitchen tap while waiting for it to warm up.
And, I knew you'd ask - yes, privet turns out to be useful as well as ornamental. Should I ever require a green dye, privet will supply it for me, as well as reducing noticeable grey in my hair when I use it as a hair rinse (possibly by dyeing it green??). Also it will cure my bronchitis, pneumonia and other respiratory infections, as well as acting as a powerful laxative. What's not to like?
Meanwhile, if you are tired of being conventional and want to give the neighbours something to talk about, why not rifle through your utensil drawer and take some of your spoons for a walk? This is guaranteed to be more fun than Christmas shopping.
Updated to add: As Fran noted in the comments - all parts of privet are poisonous. I remember when I first put it in feeling a bit like a wicked witch, flanking the front door with poisonous plants - surely very bad feng shui as well! This does not mean that privet is not medicinally helpful - think of digitalin or belladonna from other poisonous plants. However, I would no more munch on privet leaves if had pneumonia than I would make a salad of foxgloves leaves to treat a dicky heart. I am not a herbalist, and none of my posts on useful ornamental plants is meant as medical advice. I am rather hoping to share my wonderment of the enormous benefits of the common plants that grow all around us.
Apparently privet is banned for cultivation in some places as its flowers can cause eczema and other allergies. Also, horses can be poisoned by munching on privet hedges. As I am using mine for ornamental topiary balls, they won't ever have the chance to flower or fruit, and not many horses make it up the six steps to my front door... but maybe take these points into consideration before planting any at your place..