My first plant, accidentally regenerated from the stem top used in a potometer classroom experiment.

The job of Scientific Officer (Biology) in Manchester Metropolitan University comes with a plant collection.  It’s not that I never had to deal with plants, on the contrary, I grew up in the country and working on an allotment was a way of life, not mention compulsory help to the collective farms during the autumn. My father had a collection of garden flowers, including roses, tulips, gladioli, peonies, so my brother and I always had the best bouquets for our school functions.  During my 1st degree at Belarusian State University I had 2 years of various botanies: lower plants (fungi, liverworts etc.), higher plants anatomy and physiology, geobotanics, you name it. And then I graduated with a degree in Microbiology and worked as a Molecula r biologist of microorganisms for 20 years. The moves between jobs and cities, rented accommodation prevented me from ever thinking of having a home plant collection as my mother has. Presented or bought for my son plants (cyclamen, a cactus, a bonsai ficus) all died, mostly from over-watering. The only one that survived  for many years was donated by my boss orchid, which I foolishly left behind during my last move to Manchester. Having a tour of web-resources, I realized that most are specialized. Some  people grow  Geraniums (Pelargoniums)*,  but 200 varieties of them. Others have 200 African violtes, or 10 carnivorous plants. I have to be a generalist and it suits me.  I’ve had  at the start three month ago: – 4 African Violets (Saintpaulia), all purple -Chrismas cactus (Schlumbergera) all wilting and brown, in a pot covered with moss – Geraniums (Pelargoniums) – Aloe – KalanchoeSago palm (Cycas revoluta), – three unlabelled cacti, – Platycerium, – a dying from drying up mimosa, which is now dead… and some single-celled green algae. —– *Common name (Scientific name)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s