Buyers beware! – This one is for me!
Just want to relate a humorous experience to you all out there.
So this one time, we were passing through flower supermarket in one of those tourist must
see stops at the tail end of our touring day. A very spacious and well lay out walk through market place with stall upon stall of various species of flowers, the fragrant, the colors, the varieties, the everything a green thumb from North America would dream about – you name it, this market seemed to have it.
We were at the end of our tour, in two hours, we will have to board a plane to fly back to Hong Kong, we wanted to buy something, but fresh cut flowers were out of the question, pretty as they were, but they were delicate, they were perishable, but most important of it all, they were not allowed on the plane continue reading this. I have never seen flowers on the plane, have you?
Anyways, like magic, we saw some stalls near the Exist selling “Orchid Seeds”. Now, I didn’t
mean seedlings, I mean seeds. Different sizes, different colors, all carefully pre-packed in some little plastic bags – ready to go.
Wow, as we know, orchids are pricy in Vancouver, the smallest one stem varieties goes for $ 9.99, it can go up to $ 29.99. Depends on who you want to please, and how bad you want it!
So we – the tourists bought them, in bagful, some of us even managed to bargain down the price a bit. Hallelujah! And we got through customs as well!
Fast forward two years, those precious orchid seeds sat in my desk draw for two years, all the while I was contemplating how to go about planting them, nourishing them, watering them, taking care of them from seeds to blooms, just like those I saw through the flower shop windows.
I would be the proud gardener, the envy of my neighbors, the Mr. Green Thumb of the Year!
I carefully planted them in seeding planter indoors on the window sill, the windows are north facing, but it matters none, because the seeds are in a temperature controlled environment.
One week, two weeks, as Mother Nature would never let us down, the seeds sprouted out into different size and forms. With the instinct of a parent, I know it is time to perhaps transplant them out doors, as I recalled in Singapore, I saw orchids grew and flourished outdoors, that summer Vancouver was blessed with warm weather, may be I should give it a try? And try I did. I moved them out side.
The plants grew and grew, but there were something odd about the transplanted greens, they looked awful lot like the vegetable patches I grew during summers gone by. As a matter of fact, one with long stem looked just like green beans; others were just Chinese greens in waiting!
I called my pals in the States who bought the same stuff from the same stall, and he said.” I would have told you if you called me sooner, we found that out last summer!”
Ha-ha, I made a promise to myself silently, next time when I play dumb tourist, I will buy stuff that I can feel in my hands, and they will be finished products, like those beads they sell outside the monasteries in China. Like food, like steaming hot buns, I am not buying a promise no more!