Perched precariously atop the plastic toy kitchen in our dining room sits a plastic tray with Tim Hortons cups filled with promising tomato seedlings and three little broccoli seedlings. They bend and bow towards the sun, so every now and again we turn them. Cole likes to water them.
He has claimed two that are his. He rearranged the cups so that his tomato seedling and broccoli seedlings are next to each other. He requested that I use a black magic marker and print his name on the two cups with his plants in them. He checks on them regularly.
This morning, to distract him from a teary tantrum he was working up to, I pulled his chair over to the seedlings and told him to take a look at them.
Then I turned back to the kitchen to tend to some dishes and some soapy dish water.
I heard, "Uh oh! They won't stand up!"
"It's okay, honey. They will. Just leave them."
When I went back to the dining room, Cole's face didn't register any great tragedy had occurred, but I looked down and his fingers were stained with dark soil. His poor little broccoli seedling's stem had been pinched in three places and when I looked closer I saw its teensy rooted end had been plucked free of the dirt altogether.
As I picked it up, my brows furrowed, Cole commented, "I couldn't make a hole."
As futile as it was, I made an indent in the dirt with my finger and anchored the mauled plant again and tried to explain to Cole that plants are very delicate and we can watch them but not touch them.
Cole didn't seem as sad as I was.
I guess I just felt heartbroken that his gentle heart and good intentions had been the cause of this plant's demise.
Perhaps I was just sad to lose 33% of my broccoli crop.
-Miss Greenish Thumb