Within three weeks under my family's care, the adopted orchid sends out a monstrous 50cm shower of flowers. The blossoms are yellowish green with a furry pink heart.
This plant had sprung up in the manicured landscape of UTown, within a strip of grass next to a parking lot. People were stepping on it, so wholly unaware of its potential.
A few friends were amazed that I managed to spot this orchid:
Are you sure it isn't a weed? It looks like one.
You're thinking too much, XY. Seeing things when they don't exist.
The white, tubular roots? The peach-like bulb? It must be an orchid sapling. I was certain that the inconspicuous plant was an orchid but I was less clear on what to do with it. Should I remove it? Would it die under my care?
I could only imagine its fate. I had seen two other orchid clusters around and took a quiet pleasure in observing their growth. There was this strange delight that, somehow, they belonged to me alone. I celebrated each leaf's inching growth.
Then, the plants were removed by the contracted gardeners. Snuffed out before they could flower. Excised.
|The orchid was growing on the narrow strip of grass next to|
the asphalt parking lot.
|The poor thing looked like a weed. It was trampled upon.|
|The orchid rewards my help with a shower|
of flowers against the brick wall.
To date, I've spotted at least seven other clusters of wild orchids about UTown. None of them were as tall or bountiful as mine.
Here're some questions that I've yet to reconcile:
Why is it that I treat a wild orchid differently from, say, a wild mimosa?
What justifies the removal of an organism from its natural habitat? Would it still be considered 'wild'?
And should I have let the orchid face its destiny in the carpark space?