Summer 2011 Coleus: or, counting chickens…?

coleus 004

I’ve been dreading this job – but now, it’s done!

I’m actually a full three weeks earlier this year to rescue the coleus that have been languishing since the summer on the kitchen windowsill.  SEVEN glasses’ worth, at least 4-7 stems per glass.  Often very crowded – terrible conditions, as you can see from the drinking-glass-shaped tangle of roots at the right.  Plus, thanks to a few breakages, we have almost no drinking glasses left… I keep wondering where they are every time I go to take a drink, and then realize – there they are on the windowsill!

coleus 003  coleus 005 

There is something nice about taking this nightmarish chaos of roots and transforming it into something kind of orderly:

coleus 006 coleus 007

Of course, I was cheerful and optimistic last year, too, but that didn’t stop the plants from almost all dying.  Hence the question mark on this post.  Whether they will make it to summertime is far from a sure thing. 

It may FEEL like winter is almost over (to me, it always feels like winter is almost over – I’ve got to keep staring at the light at the end of that tunnel or I’ll go mad here in the darkness), but there is still one long, cold, dank stretch. 

YM has already begun complaining about the dehumidifier running downstairs, but if I shut it off, I’m sure everything will succumb that much sooner.  In the basement, these coleus really need more light, more heat… more everything.  Unfortunately, they’re not going to get it here. 

So we shall see how they fare this time around.  But I am tentitively labelling this post with the HAPPY tag because it is indeed a happy thing to be finished a task this tedious, and to be thinking about spring, far off though it may be. 

There are about 38 plants this year… not that I’m counting chickens.


  1. I haven't seen a coleus since I was a kid! They're always so pretty. I hope they survive and flourish...


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