Other uses for old plant pots

I have planted my amaryllis bulb. I couldn’t resist one of those boxes you see at garden centre, with a picture of a big red glossy flower on the side. ‘You too could have one like this,’ it screamed. So, I bought one.

It was only when I got home, I realised that the box also contained a plastic pot. Like you, I expect, I am not in need of yet another plastic pot. I have hundreds of them, covered in cobwebs, languishing in the potting shed. I also have lots of nice ceramic pots gathering dust behind the old door, lazily hanging open on broken hinges.

I braved the cobwebs and picked out a blue pot from high on a wobbly shelf. It was then I realised I was not alone. Around the pot making a sort of frill were about a dozen garden snails. They were tucked in for the winter and did not want to give up their chosen spot. No matter how I tried to push them off they would not budge. I banged the top of the pot on the fence, thinking that they would fall, but my efforts were to no avail. They still would not shift.

They were hibernating of course, and they had secreted a door of slime at their shell entrance and cemented themselves to their chosen pot. But it was my chosen pot and I wasn’t about to give up. I put the pot back and went away to think.

The next day I returned, armed with a screwdriver which I would use as a lever. I need not have bothered, they had gone – all except one who must have decided to brave it out. They had obviously not liked me banging the pot and had sensed danger and decided to scarper (if snails can scarper). I decided to take pity on the one that had been left behind and chose another pot from the shelf.

But my second choice had an old blackbird’s nest in it, and so I gave up. I planted the amaryllis in the clean black plastic pot that came in the box. It is on my window ledge and the bulb is already growing a green shoot.


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