Month: April 2020

An Easter Message

An Easter Message

Hope – and Blossoms – Spring Eternal

Many years ago, my husband Steve’s Aunt Florie gave me a cutting from one of her double hibiscus plants. Legend has it that Grandma Ann Valerie smuggled these from St. Thomas into New York by hiding the cuttings in her coat.

Florie tended her hibiscus adeptly through the years, but later on, she tried different things, like keeping an almost bare root in a bucket of water. On one visit, I brought potting soil and replanted the soggy plant. That plant bloomed right before her death. Steve took a picture of her with the red blossom.

My double hibiscus has survived many hardships, including a long power outage in the deep winter of 2005, and a brief placement on our deck in 2016, where the wind blew off most of its leaves. In each case, I was able to nurse it back to health.

But the plant never bloomed – until recently. Through research, I discovered that the plant needed more light, more water (filtered – not tap), and that regular plant food does not contain sufficient amounts of potassium sulphate that some hibiscus needs to bloom. 

The first time I fed the hibiscus with potassium sulphate, I used too much, and the leaves of the plant became like silk, and drooped. Several months later, in the fall of 2019, I tried again, and got my first timid blooms.

We painted our living room last month and moved our plants out of the bay window. Being busy with other work, we’ve left them in the middle of the living room. The hibiscus seemed happy there, and so I fed it again. And it is blooming again.

Steve says that Aunt Florie would call these blooms “the blood of Christ.” I like to think that she is smiling to see them.

Happy Easter, Folks.