Last summer, my mother-in-law was gifted with a calla lily. She loved it. She has respiratory issues, so not all plants, especially not most flowering plants, are good for her home.
(She has great aptitude for growing African violets, which stay green and lush all year, with or without blooms.)
She lamented to me that she had killed the lily. She asked me if I wanted to rescue it. I looked at it and I smiled, saying, “Sure, I’ll give it a whirl.”
MIL thought she killed her calla lily. Shh, she didn’t.
She’s just not familiar with the dormancy period of flowering plants, tee-hee.
The reason I’m giggling is because I took the lily home, carefully groomed it, gently pulling its dead leaves off as they withered, stuck it on the highest shelf in the bathroom, where it received constant low light over winter, and last week, I pulled it out, set it in the sun, gave it a little water, and poof! the calla lily knows it’s spring!
I fed it Monday, and am hoping by the time Mother’s Day rolls around, I will be able to re-pot it in a pretty permanent container, and give it back to her. Then I will explain the magic of dormancy.
This is a woman who tells the children that Jesus painted the pretty fall foliage, so she will no doubt love the resurrection.
In the meantime, I gave her an orchid for Christmas, and explained how easy it would be to care for, if she did x, y, and z. The orchid is still going strong, so I think that’s a good sign. I know it’s a boost for her confidence.
You see, that’s why I didn’t tell her how to do it. MIL would fuss over it and worry about it. And if it didn’t come back, she’d take it personally. They don’t always come back, but the odds are in her favor. If she wants me to keep doing it, I will, but I really think she can manage.
For me, this is one of those things I’m so eager about, I actually get giddy! The anticipation of returning the calla lily to her is intoxicating! I’m getting so excited!