The Orange Report

No. I'm not gonna write about University of Tennessee football...their nickname is "the big orange," you know? (But that would be funny, wouldn't it? Like if i were a closet football fan? If i just hauled off and wrote something like "i just can't believe Thompson pulled that groin muscle and red-shirted!" It would be like the time a peace-mongering hippie friend of mine looked up into the sky and said--concerning a plane overhead--something like "hmmm...that looks like an x-409." Turned out that while he hated war he just loooved fighter planes and had learned to identify them all by their silhouette.)


One time, when Alison and i were in Provence France, i had like a mini-spiritual experience. Don't worry. i have them a lot, so it's okay. See, what i did was see a lizard on a plant leaf. We were out walking along a trail in an out-of-the-way location--even by Provence standards--and there were lots of things like lizards on leaves. I saw this particular lizard and liked the way it looked, so i stopped for closer inspection. When i did that, i noticed that the leaf was covered in bugs. Lots of different bugs. And then i saw that the leaf itself had maybe some kind of lichen growing on it, and so forth. It was like the song "There's a Hole in the Bottom of the Sea." Everything had something else growing or living on it.

And so it is with Charleston. This place is full of tropical fecundity. Everywhere is a bug, everywhere, a plant. Things grow easily. I'll inadvertantly drop, say, a cutting from a house plant out in the yard and notice a few days later that it's planted itself and is flourishing.

Things die easily too. I've let some of those houseplants be. Just left them there in the yard to see what would happen. Many are doing fine, while others have fallen prey to insects. Our tomatoes, for instance, have produced amazingly well considering they're so close to a pecan tree and are also quite shaded. But they are wilting due to some unknown cause. Our yard is also home to a lot of caterpillars that i'll bet would taste a lot like basil if you were to eat one.

Anyway, the thing i want to get around to here is this: One of the ways Charleston is fun to me is because of some of its plant life, and specifically plant life i've not encountered heretofore. Right outside our kitchen window, for instance, is an orange tree. Or, i guess it's an orange tree. Currently the little oranges on it look like lemons or limes, but since i've never seen an orange tree or a lime/lemon (same thing?) tree in action, i have no idea what it is.

I'm waiting excitedly for it to tell me the news.

Every morning i've been taking a look at it outside that window to see how it's doing and realized the other day that i needed to take a picture of it. I did that. And now i've decided that i'm gonna publish that picture here on the blog for all to see, so that you, too, can keep up with how the orange/lemon/lime tree is doing. I'll try to take another picture in a week or so--and so forth--so we can all monitor this tiny piece of nature's progress together.

here is today's orange report:


The Mom said...

Cool! Outside your kitchen window - is that in the neighbor's yard? If it's oranges, will you be able to have some of them, I wonder??

Looking forward to more orange posts - and to seeing you guys in just 4 more days!

By the way - we love the roof on the deck!

claire said...

did you know that if the leaves of your tomato become yellow you can pee on the plant and it will provide much needed nitrogen? But if you are a meat eater you should pee in a jar and water it down or you might burn the roots.

Hard to tell the shape of the fruit from the picture -- is it round? It looks big.