I have a sad story to share. Last Sunday, my husband and I planted 33 ceanothus impressus Victoria to have a continuous hedge along the street side of our home. We picked it for the drought resistance, and for the attraction for bees and butterflies and hummingbirds. After waving to the little babies last night from the window (yep, I’m a woman who talks to her plants), I awoke to 33 empty holes. Someone came by in the middle of the night and stole every single one.
I know there are worse problems to have in life (I’ve been battling brain cancer for five years now so I can roll with the punches), but even a little thing like this makes you incredibly sad. If you get approached by anyone selling those little 1-gallon-sized California Lilacs, could you please contact me?
This was the first permanent plant that we chose together. We never really thought we would be able to afford a home, in the first place, with all the years of brain surgeries and cancer treatments, but a miracle happened and we found a little 1950s gem of our own here in Edmonds.
We were so excited to watch our little bird/bee/butterfly bushes grow over the years, and couldn’t wait to supply the neighborhood with pollination and beauty. We adore this community, the neighbors have been incredibly inviting, we walk down to the farmer’s market every Saturday for our groceries, and I spend most days at the library, after taking our dog Emma to the dog park. (Holy cow, a waterfront dog park?! Fancy.)
Have any of you ever had something like this happen? I’m embarrassed to say I’m crying about this. It’s the violation, and disregard for our personal space. You never know what people are going through, and those little beautiful plants were a vision of hope and longevity. I probably sound crazy, it’s hard to explain. Sometimes you just need permanence in your life when everything else is always up in the air. I hope this doesn’t happen to any of you guys. Here’s a photo slide ending with the glorious spring, midsummer blooms. I want to plant them again, but won’t because I fear the thieves will just take them again. It’s a sad day in our garden.
We will move on — this thievery will not be that big of a deal — but it’s an ugly choice that people make, and when you make ugly choices against others, your heart will never be fulfilled. One of the most hopeful, and saddest, parts of the whole deal is that people from the neighborhood kept coming by and encouraging us. They introduced themselves, we made more friends. It’s becoming a community within a community. Even the two vivacious little girls next door last night rode their bicycles over to our house to say how much they loved the plants (they both love hummingbirds and butterflies). They were thrilled about the possible hummingbirds, and bees, and butterflies for next spring and summer. Now I feel bad because everyone was so excited with us, and I have the task of letting them know that there’s a plant bandit and beware.
I am sharing this story so that it may help someone else be prepared to avoid something like this in the future. I don’t know how one would prepare for a thief, other than surveillance cameras. Any other suggestions would be gratefully appreciated. A police report has been filed. We will look into surveillance monitoring systems. There are always solution of sorts, but I certainly wish we didn’t have to live like this.
To the thieves: “Come on people, we’re in this life together. We make the decisions on who we want to be, and how we want to treat others. In every second you’re making decisions, and in every second, you can change the direction of how you’re going to live. It’s all your choice. Maybe it sounds too simple, or hopefully not too preachy, but if you want to be happy, be happy. If you want to be nice to others, be nice to others. Decide what you want, then go for it. Your life will be forever changed. Your heart forever changed.”
— By Jessica Oldwyn