Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Easy Watering with Bulb Basters & Ice Cubes

How grand the sago palm (A) looks, sitting on the mahogany chest in the front hall.

Several weeks ago, fearing a cold snap that has yet to materialize, The Prince hauled the cast iron pot in from the front porch and patiently moved it here and there while I waved him to and fro.

Taking pity -- the pot plus the soil easily weighs 60 awkward pounds, and the fronds of the palm are as sharp as the teeth of vicious elves -- I let it come to rest in the dining room, booting the previously grand arrangement (B) of things living and dead (in a pot of similar weight) to behind the living room sofa where it replaced the dramatically broken pedestal planter (D) which was then moved to the dining room table.
This did not work. What looked good on the dining room's sideboard looked sneezingly fussy in the living room -- quite alarmingly so.

Taking full advantage of L'Oreal's excellent Power Volume mascara (which I mention because I've been informed that mentioning things is an excellent way to build a blog's audience), I lash-batted our muscular friend Mike, who was loitering about, into the rearrangement of the various arrangements, which entailed an additional move of the Chinese pot (C) in the hallway to the living room, replacing it with pot A, moving pot B back to the dining room, and returning the pedestal to its living room perch.

This is all neither here nor there because the subject of this post is watering plants that are impossible to water without destroying the finish on your mahogany whatnot-- unless you're an anal nut with nothing better to do and can stand there drip dripping water with an eye-dropper until your overstuffed pots are properly moist.

We are certainly not that.  We also do not have a great deal to say about watering and so needed a deal of padding and photos to get us to:

Maggie offered a fine solution some years ago, when I was having a pain in the ass time watering hanging plants -- ice cubes, she said. And this works quite well.  Just stick cubes between the leaves and they'll melt without slopping all over the floor and the furniture and you don't have to move a damn thing.

Advice aggregator, Heloise, offered another solution in yesterday's paper -- use a bulb baster. 

I'm scratching my head thinking of something I can add to that, but I can't, so here's a picture of mine.

In inspired conclusion --I was happy to trip across something useful in her column, since I usually view it as a bird cage liner of  amusing Things for You to Do-- as I am certainly not going to (among many other ideas) make nursing pads by cutting up disposable diapers and sewing up the edges with my dusty Singer, which has to do with absolutely nothing -- I just found it the most absurdly pathetic suggestion I'd ever read and it has been lodged in my brain for 20 years, waiting for a place to stick it. There.


  1. How does the water get out of the baster without someone squeezing it? Unless you're talking about literally standing there and basting your plant. I guess I'm thinking of those swirly glass bulb water thingers.

  2. Well... you do have to squeeze, but it's more controlled than attempting to water with a teapot or glass or watering can which sploshes all over and particularly on the bombe (supply your own accent over the e) chest making white marks that you then spend the rest of the afternoon trying to erase. The ice cube method is, of course, pretty fool proof. And I mean that literally.

  3. The Sago arrangement is beautiful, love it!

    1. Thanks much Gaz -- though it's not much more than a great plant in a great pot with a bit of wandering jew wandering about, as it does


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