Remember that game we used to play? Tree or Bush? You took a blade of grass that had gone to seed, asked your friend “tree or bush?” and then proceeded to do the opposite of their response.
“Ha, ha, ha, NOPE – bush.” “You guessed BUSH? It’s a tree, sucker.”
It was so ridiculous, but so satisfying. Oh the games kids play. And then we move into adulthood and leave childish things behind.
But then there was that time that my husband decided to plant a sapling that had randomly taken root on his mom’s balcony.
“Check it out! It’s a Maple tree! And it just spontaneously took root in an empty cinder block.”
Readers, to be fair and accurate, I was on board with the transplanting of said maple sapling into our newly-purchased back yard. We had just taken ownership of our first home and were anxious to put our own mark on it. Sure, let’s find a spot and get some shade going.
We couldn’t believe how quickly it took root. It was so hardy. So strong. So bendy. Wait, bendy? Are trees supposed to be that flexible? Nevermind, we were new to this whole tree-planting thing.
A few weeks passed and I started to doubt the veracity of the claims that this was a maple. Or a tree. But my husband would not be deterred.
“I don’t know, it grew awfully fast, almost LIKE A WEED.”
Bearded Husband replied, “I’m sure all saplings grow quickly, plus we have a lot of sunlight.”
“Those leaves don’t look very maple-y.”
BH: “It’s just a variation of maple, they all have their own look.”
“Isn’t it supposed to have bark?”
BH: “You might have a point.”
“It’s gone to seed, like a dandelion. A very tall dandelion.”
BH: “I’ll get the shovel.”
We laughed at our gardening misstep as we removed this very tall transplanted weed from our lawn. Weren’t we so naive to think a maple tree just appeared in a block of cement? And then we planted it? Adorable. What a rookie mistake.
Ha, ha, ha. Newbies. Any expereinced gardener/homeowner wouldn’t make that error in herbology.
Nope, definitely not. Especially a second time.
Fast forward eleven years to our second home. We inherited a nicely landscaped yard. All we had to do was weed and tidy until we were ready to put our own stamp on it. So weed and tidy we did.
“I think that one tree at the side of the house isn’t a tree. I think it’s a weed.”
BH: “It’s ten feet tall. It’s a tree.”
“It looks a lot like that so-called tree we planted at the old house.”
BH: “Quiet. It’s fine”
“Is it that you just don’t want to dig it out and dispose of it?”
I conducted a highly scientific survey of my social media contacts and three of them agreed it was a weed, so I hacked that invader down.
One time is a rookie error, two times is lack of memory, but three times isn’t possible.
Last month I was trimming near the side of the house and discovered a green, leafy creature resembling those dancing air things you see on car lots.
“We have one of those aggressively tall weeds again.”
BH: “Our neighbour has planted a lot this spring, I think it’s hers.”
“ONLY IF SHE PLANTED MAGIC BEANS.”
BH: “SHE HAS A REALLY GREEN THUMB.”
The weed-tree and I are presently at a stand-off, mostly because I’m afraid it has become self-aware. It knows too much. It’s Little Shop of Horrors, but the plant knows where I keep my secret stash of M&Ms and that I’m the one who finished the Doritos.