Acquiring a new houseplant is an act of optimism. You may have killed every pothos and peace lily that's ever lived on your windowsill, but this one’s going to be different.
This is going to be the plant that you nurture properly, that you water enough but not too much, that you stream Mozart and Radiolab for when you leave the house. It’s going to grow up healthy. It’s going to be strong. It’s going to have a nice, earnest name like George Clooney or Ms. Plant. You’re going to live happily ever after.
It’s a real bummer, then, when that plant kicks the bucket.
Mourning a plant might seem silly. It’s not a pet, after all; it wasn’t cuddling with you, playing with you, or even relying on you consciously. But just as a healthy houseplant can have real therapeutical benefits, the death of a houseplant can have real psychological and emotional effects, especially considering the parental connotation we’ve given plant care. Read more...