You just might be a gardener if…

  • You were the height of style when “dirty looking” jeans came into fashion because virtually every pair you own has brown splotches in the area of the knees.
  • You spot a particularly beautiful plant in the reduced section of the garden center and mentally calculate how much food you have in the freezer that you can use that week in order to shave the grocery budget down so you can buy it.
  • You buy said plant and immediately get it in the ground when you get it home, hide the evidence (pots and tags), and then when your significant other comments on it say “oh that!  I didn’t realize it had come back this year, I planted that years ago”.
  • You leave the tags of long dead perennials in the ground where they were planted “just in case” they miraculously do a “Lazarus” and rise from the dead several years after their demise in the hopes that you can recognize the plant when it returns.
  • Similarly, you leave the tags of long dead annuals in the ground where they were planted “just in case” they self seed and you will need some reference so you don’t mistake the seedlings for weeds, this madness continues for years until eventually the tags crumble into dust and you have to piece them together to figure out what they were.
  • You have a stockpile of pots and containers ranging from six-pack cells all the way up to gallon containers that you promise you will recycle one day but you keep around because “you never know when I might need that” to the extent that if you got it into your head tomorrow to open up a nursery you wouldn’t need anything in the way of supplies.
  • You have long since gone from talking to your plants “in your head” and now unashamedly chat with them while working around them, “well hello there you pretty thing, how are we doing today?”, and you don’t care what the neighbor’s think.
  • You say at least once during the growing season “I don’t remember planting that” out loud.
  • The only way you can get the dirt out of your finger nails is to wash your hair or do a load of dishes.
  • You never fully get the dirt out of your toenails no matter how much you scrub them.
  • Your toenails look like parrot’s beaks thanks to being shoved into flip-flops and stuffed under your thighs while you kneel and tend to your plants.
  • If you are given a gift that is not gardening related your mind immediately calculates how many plants you could have bought with the money.
  • You eye a rack full of discount seeds the way a Meth Addict looks at the Sudaphed counter at a pharmacy whereupon you spend $25.00 on 10 of $1.00 seed packets  and your “seed stash” could probably repopulate the earth with all manner of flora should Armageddon ever actually occur.
  • You observe plants growing out of their plastic bag at the garden center, what you SEE however is several litters of starving kittens and puppies who would thrive if you could just take them home and stuff them full of kitten and puppy chow.
  • You find things growing in your garden and put them on “weed probation” just  in case it is an actual plant that you might like.  By the time it has become obvious that it really is a weed you have become so attached to it or discovered that it has some characteristics that are actually useful you don’t want to pull it, whereupon you promptly rename it “a volunteer” and brag about using “natives” in your garden.
  • You hate to kill anything, so instead of mowing down seedlings of useful plants you dig them up, put them in pots, and give them away free to neighbors.

Finally, if you have ever returned from a trip to a garden center, display garden, stately home, or national park with a purse full of seed heads that you have absolutely no hope of a) sorting out b) remembering what they are or c) have any clue how to grow,  then you just might be a gardener.

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