It's not that I don't like plants. We have a number in our home. I've been blackballed from doing anything except looking at them, from a safe distance. If my husband had his way it would be preferable if I were not to breathe in their presence. He has a point. My track record keeping our leafy green friends alive is poor.
I can remember my first horticultural disappointment with gutwrenching clarity. At the age of five, all my school friends were delighting in the growth of the little green tufts of cress, popping up from individual pots which had our names written in purple felt tip on the side. Though I stared at my pot full of soil and willed some growth, it, to my chagrin and to my teacher's incredulousness, remained cressless. So my inadequacies when it comes to flora and fauna were identified at an early stage.
Thankfully, it seems Finje has inherited her father's Midas touch with plant life.
Last week she arrived home from kindergarten clutching a plant pot with her name scrawled on the side in purple felt tip. I kid you not! Recovering from an uncomfortable flashback, I peered into the pot hoping that Finje's cress would be thriving. Because I'm selfless like that!
Seems in Germany, they laugh in the face of cress or decapitated carrots. Oh no, here, the kids plant Feuerbohnen, which is apparently the Scarlet Runner Bean, don't you know?
Finje's Scarlet Runner Bean, is, frankly, magnificent and she is understandably proud as punch.
I questioned my daughter on her tactics regarding Scarlet Runner Bean cultivation. The way I see it, if a five year old child can produce such a resplendent specimen, surely this was a plant I could try my plant killing hand at.
But it seems, according to Finje, I stand little chance of replicating her triumph. Obviously not keen to spill all the secrets of her success, she gave her answer considerable thought. According to my very own aspiring Charlie Dimmock,
'It's not what you say to them, it's how you say it.'
Any further insight into her mysterious gardening capabilities were not forthcoming, so I shall leave her to it.
Hate gardening anyway.