About this time last year, I bought a Rose of Jericho at a tea shop. The Rose of Jericho is a plant that looks brown and dead until it is watered. Then unfurls, turning green in the center and smelling like the forest floor.
I documented in detail the purchase, the first day, and the second day of the Rose of Jericho. Then outdoor plants beckoned me away from the cycles of my indoor oddity, and I did not mention it again.
Looking back on the past year, I must admit I have not often watered the Rose and experienced its resurrection. The sheet of care tips that the tea-shop owner wrote recommended letting the plant go through its natural dry, dormant periods for a couple weeks between each watering. Since I water my other houseplants on a totally different cycle – every two or three days, I wouldn’t include the Rose of Jericho in these regular waterings, intending to water it separately. Sometimes months would pass before I remembered to do so. I also became hesitant to water it when a few small white puffs of mold appeared in its center after one watering.
But now that the July sun is again heating my windowsill up like the Rose of Jericho’s native desert, I was happy to water it and watch it unfold. And I set it outside in the summer sunlight, letting it bloom over the street.
The summer here feels too hot now, but soon it will seem too short. We might as well bask in it while we can.