This is a bit of a different story. This is a story about my dear friend Mr Aloe, well Mr Aloe Vera to be precise. He started his life off at a Netto in Sweden. It was back in 2014. I had lived in Sweden for about a week, and one day after work I went into Netto to get a few bits before going home. There he was. A little cheap aloe vera plant. I don’t know why I picked him up really, apart from him telling me I needed to, and maybe also the fact that I wanted an easy going plant to give my new room some greenery, either way I ended up picking him. Being a bit prejudgmental, I thought “oh it won’t live for long but it will do for now at least”.
As time went by, my plant stayed healthy and strong, moving houses and flats a few times with me, and getting bigger and bigger. Eventually I realised I was very fond of my dear plant, and one day I found myself talking to it more than usual. That’s when I found out that he was Mr Aloe Vera. He has been there with me through a lot of ups and downs, heat waves and freezing spells, and has always been standing proud in my window keeping me company.
Now Mr Aloe has even lived in 2 different countries with me, and last summer he even bloomed. Now that flower was so beautiful, and something I never thought in my wildest dreams would happen… specially not to a little cheap plant bought in a food shop.. But it did. He did that for me! ️❤️
Now yesterday was my turn to do something for him. He has for quite a while now been living in a tight space with his babies (yes that’s right, he got babies!!). I have promised him for ages now to help him, and them, move out, so they would have more space. Recently I have seen that he has been struggling a bit, feeling a bit overwhelmed by everything, almost like he felt that his beloved children were suffocating him. I have not really dared to help him, as I have been worried I would hurt him or one of his children. It would absolutely break my heart if he, or his family died, but yesterday it happened. After laying out a beautiful turquoise shower curtain (turquoise being a healing colour felt very apt for this occasion), I finally did it. I lifted the 30kg pot onto the floor, supporting the weight of Mr Aloe with my shoulder as I gently laid him down like a child, and started my moving out mission. I didn’t really think I could feel so much when it came to repotting a plant, but Mr Aloe really is special to me. I was very careful as I tried to remove the soil and separate the roots, so they could all feel like individuals. This went well, and I felt myself breathe out a big breath of relief. Unfortunately a few leaves broke during the whole process, and some were already broken from living so crammed. Seeing the gel from inside seep out was like seeing blood dripping from limbs. I felt like I was hurting him, and it hurt me. I kept talking calmly, lovingly and telling them how much better they will feel once it is done, all the while trying to tell myself this too.
Mr Aloe and three of his children moved into a bigger pot together, and three of his other children got their own individual homes, while the last four tiny babies got a tiny pot (or crib) together. Currently they are getting used to their new homes all next to each other on the chest in front of my bedroom window, where they have lived for the past year. I am talking to them daily, and hoping they all become strong, happy and healthy. So many leaves broke off in this move though, so I decided to do two experiments with propagating from Mr Aloe. So now I have 20 little leaf tips in soil, hopefully at least a few of them will set and become new babies, while I have another 20 tips laid out to dry for a week, before I dip them in rooting compound and plant them and see if they take root. I hope some of these experiments will be successful, and if nothing else I feel happy that I have done everything I can in an attempt to save as much of Mr Aloe as I possibly can. 😇😇😇
This really is a different type of blog from me, however, I felt that I needed to share mine and Mr Aloes story, and after all, this blog is meant to be about several aspects of my life.. And Mr Aloe is a big one.
Plants have always been special to me, and I have always loved being in the garden or close to plants. I grew up with a garden, and in the countryside, and have always been close to nature. My Morfar, maternal grandfather, was a very avid gardener and took great pride in it, and I always remember being allowed to come into his garden while he happily showed me around and told me about his plants. Frogs happily jumping in his pond, butterflies and bumble bees flying between flowers, and birds singing beautiful songs in the trees. My mum always had a lovely herd garden and as soon as I could I helped to keep a vegetable patch as well as the herbs going.
I now have 2 plants, which I have a very huge sentimental attachment to. Mr Aloe, who you now know a bit about, and Hibby. Hibby is a beautiful hibiscus.. I’m not too sure on the name thought, but when a plant tells you their name it would be rude calling them something else wouldn’t it? Hibby was one of my Morfars plants, and when he died in 2001 one of my cousins got “custody” of them and have kept them beautifully alive for all those years. A few years ago I had the honour of taking over custody of one of the hibiscus plants, Hibby. Having Hibby makes me feel like my Morfar is with me. I have found over the years that I talk to Hibby both as Hibby, but also as my Morfar, and it feels nice.
I think it is amazing how these strong bonds can be formed between plants. How their life and feelings can be felt, if you really let yourself open up to them. I love all my plants, but these two have a very special place in my heart.
Anyway, enough of me sounding extremely crazy, I hope you enjoyed my story about Mr Aloe, and that you are all well!
I’m off to practise playing my bass now for Mr Aloe and the Vera family.
Stay in, stay safe, stay warm, stay happy. Lots of Love C ❤️
Mr Aloe and Hibby in June 2019
Mr Aloe and family before the big move, and laid out to be separated
Mr Aloe and Vera family in their new homes