The Transplant Shock

I never had known before that I had inherited the gardening gene from my mother along with the passion of baking. But now that I have, I am having some hands-on experience with the exciting part of botany which seemed quite boring when I read it in school.

For the past few months, I have a new attraction and that too a good one – plants and learning the art of gardening. Not only has it come in as a new activity while I have been trying to settle down in all materialistic ways and in sanity, in a new country, but it feels like having some company too, once my husband leaves for his work.

Potting them, fertilizing the soil, pruning and watering my plants are a new addition to a ‘responsible living’ for me. ♥  If one could watch me over a hidden CCTV footage, I could easily be called obsessed. At least that is what my concerned better half tells me and I take it more like a compliment owing to the fever of the ‘responsible living’.

Not only am I restricted to plants that I shop from the nursery, I am on a spree of saving seeds from whatever vegetable is on my chopping board and doing a quick research on gardening tips on the internet unless I am saturated with all the information. But, the bottom line is I have been doing fairly well so far in spite of boring my mother, aunt (my green thumb women) and of course my husband with daily plant bulletins and in converting my patio and kitchen window sill into a botanical experiment lab. Eventually its all about pleasing the little kid inside us, right? And so shall it be.

In all this excitement, arrives a new plant to my garden. Bright and colorful and I could not even wait a night to position it in a bigger pot. My excitement was brimming on top of my head and the next morning I woke up snoozing the alarm a fewer times than usual. Gathering all the tools, a bottle of water and the new big pot, I was all set to plant the bright pink and yellow Celosia or the Cock’s comb and not wait to adorn my modest patio. With the experience of a beginner and will of an expertise, I started the process of replanting them. Honestly, it took me quite some time to finish this first time rewarding ordeal and like an ignorant gardener I placed this new pot in a good looking position in my happy patio.

Little did I realize, that my blinded overjoy had underestimated the strong Texan Sun and its  damaging UV power to these delicate new-comers. Within a few hours of my return from a quick grocery, my heart almost skipped a beat seeing them torn apart like a lost war. There I go. I was so mad at myself for behaving immaturely ignorant. I immediately removed them to a more cool and shady place and tied some jute strings to support them from falling apart.The next day,they seemed even worse and when I googled it up, I came across the term called ‘Transplant Shock’  that plants undergo due to stark changes in their environment and it takes them quite some care and sufficient time to recuperate from this shock.

Transplant Shock- was a totally new term and a new scenario to me. My mother advised to moderately water the plant, leaving it in part shade and give it time to adjust and revive. Made sense! It is always wise to give some time to time and allow one to heal.

As I met my plants first thing every morning and watched them even more closely wondering what more could I do to help without force or damage, I became more conscious of the Transplant Shock Syndrome and wondered if I too was going through or recovering a one?

Moving into a different country,  in a new environment, so far from my home, my land, my people and my comfort zone wasn’t easy and I am still dealing with it. Even though the brain understands that the vast greens and the expanses of the blue skies all belongs to the same planet, but the heart and the mind inside the heart, feels so far from it’s original roots. And the answer was right there, in front of me.

Cribbing, mood swings, sleepless nights, long hours over the phone or forcibly wanting my scientific brain and emotional heart to adjust was not doing me any good. Instead may be all I still needed to do, is give me some considerable time, some watering of consideration and the partial shade of motivation and accept the change. And as I understood this well and gave my Celosia some time by itself, 2 of the 3 plants did start to revive and sprout new leaves and this revival brought in some hope for me as well and a comfort that I will hold on to my sanity and let acceptance seep me with comfort and content.

Isn’t it strange that in most ways we all are part of the same game and the same story to thrive, survive and bloom once we overcome the phase of a transition?


If you feel the same, please share your views  on the Transplant Shock Syndrome. 🙂

Pic Courtesy: Google. Mine are still recovering from what made me call them as ICU plants.. 😀

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