Once upon a time, I thought I had a green thumb. But I have sadly neglected my yard in recent years, and I should only be allowed to own house plants that thrive on neglect. I do have one excuse to brag, however. My giant bird of paradise plant is blooming, as you can see. If that fails to impress, consider the fact that I raised this plant from a seed.
A few years ago, my husband came home from a business trip with a package of the most bizarre-looking seeds I’d ever seen. With very low expectations, I planted them in a pot and waited to see if anything would happen. Four of the five grew, much to my surprise, and the largest one is now blooming in our living room!
So what does any of this have to do with my twin themes of Jane Austen and writing? I could say that Miss Austen was an avid gardener. Although references like the one below show she had some interest, “avid” would probably be an exaggeration. Or I could tell you how every novel begins with a tiny seed of an idea that, with time and a lot of effort, has the potential to grow and bloom into a thing of beauty. True, but I have another post about that. Basically, I just love flowers of every description, and wanted to show off my pride and joy. Hope you don’t mind.
Some of the flower seeds are coming up very well… Our young piony at the foot of the fir-tree has just blown and looks very handsome, and the whole of the shrubbery border will soon be very gay with pinks and sweet-williams, in addition to the columbines already in bloom. (letter from Jane to her sister, dated May 29, 1811)