Monday 9th October 2006
In the Summer I had a notion to buy a white geranium. Apart from the clever ones in the Living Machine in Findhorn, I had seen a beautiful ballerina white one in Belfast in February, then in London in July, the window box of the hotel opposite mesmerised me for three days on the trot, in it's white and green beauty. On the day I was coming home, I went over to it, to smell it, and saw that it was full of white geraniums.
There are times I suspect that the Universe has a notepad of reminders for each of us.
Wake up calls. Remember this. There's a reason this is calling you. Don't think. Just do it.
That the notion came back into my head this Summer as I turned into Belmont St to find the farmers market in full flow, is just one of those lovely reminders. That there was a stall selling plant plugs was another.
"I'm looking for a white geranium please. I asked, thinking, no way I'll find a white one.
"How many would you like?
She had them. Wee plugs of white geranium. I bought one, replanted it at home. Stuck some dragon fly stickers on the pot, and put some raw amethyst crystals around it, on top of the soil. To remind me of the geraniums in Findhorn.
It has been exuberantly and fragrantly happy on the window sill all Summer and is in it's fifth flowering now. Pure white marshmallow flowers with a tiny deep orange stigma in the centre. The flowers have no scent, but the leaves and stems pulse a gloriously healing concoction whenever anyone is anywhere near it. It's a scent I didn't like when I was a child, bit like the flavour of mushrooms or the taste of red wine. It's an acquired palate.
One of the previous flower heads, once the petals had fallen, developed what I can only describe as a heron bill-shaped spike. Like it was growing a periscope. I left it to see what happened. As the stem died down I cut it off only when the newer stem needed to flower.
I kept it and let it dry out, and when I noticed it had become wrinkled and looked empty, curiosity got the better of me and I slit it open.
Out popped three seeds, springing out with such energy I got a fright. Nature is the ultimate designer. So fucking clever. Such grace and beauty. Not a space wasted, optimum energy to do just what's needed for everything to thrive. No more no less. It is honed. Perfect.
We have a lot to learn.
If we keep our eyes peeled.
Like an idiot Jack In The Beanstalk with his magic beans, I was chuffed. Like I'd discovered something new. Well, I had. It was new to me.
They were medium sized seeds, a slim oval shape and each had a spiral feathered frond. I suspect to give them a soft landing, a whizzy helicopter ride away from the mother plant and a final spin into the soil on landing.
So that's just what I did. I let them sit for a couple of days and the fronds feathered up nicely. Then I planted them in with the Findhorn Hazel - now full of leaves and growing strong.
Today as I was looking at the morning sunshine and checking the plants, I saw it. One has taken. Tiny but strong it has two leaves stretching towards the sun. It could be anything. Lettuce and broccoli both look like this when they are small. Not as thick on the minute leaves though. I turned the pot so that it will grow straight, and felt like standing up straighter myself. There is nothing like a plant surprise to cheer up a gal.
I went to work. Well I was already there. And as I walked to the gym at lunchtime in the brisk Autumn sunshine, moon in the sky, I just managed to nip the worry in the bud, that this can't last, this lovely day to day of life. Can it?
I must be careful what I wish for.