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How I became a plant smuggler

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I never intended to become a plant smuggler; it was something that I slowly progressed into. The reasons are very simple; I love to grow unusual plants creating a unique Polyculture within my own backyard. The reason I call it smuggling is that that I have to smuggle the plants past my spouse, she has determined by using some unknown cosmic source that we should have enough plants and enough varieties of plants in our backyard. I on the other hand believe that you can never have enough diversity in your plant guilds, always striving to increase diversity which increases the potential for a larger crop output and helping to protect the plants against insects by creating confusion among them. The question is not really why I call it smuggling, but what exactly do I do about it. I have created a few simple responses that can be used when purchasing additional plants without the fear of my spouse’s reprisal.

1. It’s part of my Master Gardener class.

2. It was a gift from another Master Gardener.

3. I am preparing for a presentation on this particular plant.

4. I need to take pictures for an article.

5. It’s a gift from a friend.

6. I am nursing it back to health for a coworker.

7. It is part of continuing education for Ohio State Extension Office.

8. The herb is going to be used for medicinal purposes.

9. I found it growing wild in the park.

10. It’s worth a lot of money on Ebay.

11. The birds must have dropped seeds in our backyard.

12. I am watering it for a friend while they are on vacation.

13. It’s going to be used for Earth Day.

14. I have had it for years.

15. I am going to sell the seeds.

16. I am going to give away the seeds to the neighbors.

17. Look what started growing on its own.

18. They were going to throw it away.

Some are quite humorous, others are downright true. So remember when you need a good excuse to bring another plant home, many of us have already been there, so learn from our mistakes and if you have any new ones to add, email them to me so I can continue to add to the list. The life you save may be my own. With personal and professional regards - Vince

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