Once upon a time I had a fern and I didn’t kill it. Once upon this time, actually. It’s pretty flabbergastingly great really because, you see, I love ferns. I really do. They’re so fresh and verdant and classy and stuff. Up until now, I’ve killed everyone that I’ve owned. Quickly, and efficiently. Somehow following all the rules hasn’t worked for me.
I bought myself this one for Mother’s Day and hung it on a hook from our little side porch. It looked fantastic… for about three days.
Then it started to get a little sunburnt. Then a lot sunburnt. Then it looked a little weepy. I was watering it regularly, but not too regularly. Bringing it inside during sunny times of day, everything. Then it was done.
Time to throw it in the trash.
As a last ditch experiment, I decided to cut it back a little. Then, hey, why not, I cut it back a lot. Completely actually. And brought it into the mudroom, the one with all the window across the front of the house.
Bingo. About a month later and I had a fern again!
Oh, and that pot? You want to know about that pot? You mean the awesome crackly, aged, rope-edged work of art there? Yeah, I saw you eyeing that up.
Well, it’s actually so aged that it’s in three pieces, with the potted fern sitting inside. I refuse to part with it though.
Love the flip flops and rain boots. Don’t you?
The pot belonged to our neighbor in our old house. She was the most wonderful gardener. One of these ladies who dug up her whole lawn to replace it with a perfectly timed botanical symphony that lasted all year. It was a little magical what she did in that little townhouse garden.
Sadly she passed away a few years ago. New neighbors moved in and decided to clear out the yard and put in a lawn for their dogs. Did we want anything from the yard? It was all going in the trash anyway.
The pot! The pot that I’d been eyeing up for the last few years as it was filled to overflowing with all kinds sunny, happy flowers. The pot that I always admired over the fence as we were chatting about good hiking trails or how to finally keep those darn ground hogs away.
Only at this point it had been left outside for a few winter seasons and was badly cracking and falling apart.
So now it’s here. Full of holes, but still managing to hold so much magic. Maybe some of it will rub off on my fern.
Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.