house plant disposal

I have about ten house plants. Not many, but enough. Well, too many actually. They are dependents I do not need or want. With the exception of three of them, they offer me little joy. For almost two years I’ve wanted to get rid of them, and I don’t know how.

Obvious Option #1: Throw them out. But I can’t do that…I feel too guilty! Not from an environmental perspective, as I’d just compost them, but from a guilt perspective. I just can’t throw out a living plant.

Obvious Option #2: Let them die and then throw them out. Perhaps that would be easier? Easier to get rid of something dead and ugly than something green and oxygen-providing. So I have gone on a watering strike a couple of times. But they end up looking so pathetic that I water them again. And within hours they are perky and green again. Stupid hearty plants.

The other problem with #1 and #2 is that throwing them away is a lot of work. More work than continuing to water them. I’d have to empty all the dirt, clean up all the pots, clean up the mess I’d make while doing all that. And a couple of them are quite large, which means I’d probably have to cut them up. I can’t even throw them away…how could I cut them up??

Obvious Option #3: Give them away. One friend has shown an interest, but that was months ago. Nothing has come of it. My cleaning lady is coming tomorrow so I’ll ask her if she wants any of them. I should make it an all or nothing deal. You want that one? Well you’re taking these six as well then.

There is another option, which I’m currently testing to see if it works. I’ve put two in our sunroom, which is very cold at this time of year. I don’t see them on a regular basis, so I won’t be reminded to water them. Hopefully they’ll die peacefully, and next time I notice them they’ll be unrecognizable and I’ll quietly throw them in the compost, guilt-free. Of course, one of the ones I put out there is currently flowering for only the second time in the eight years I’ve had it. As if to say “keep me, keep me!”. Stupid plant.

The only three I want to keep are a fig tree and two African violets. The fig tree was one of my first house plants ever. It almost died once, but I nursed it back to health. It deserves to live. One of the African violets was from a good friend’s wedding. It desperately needs to be repotted, but it’s hanging in there. And the other African violet is just a really healthy plant that flowers often, doesn’t take up a lot of room, is in a very pretty pot, and requires very little attention.

So, uh, does anyone want some plants?

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