For the Love of Plants

I had seen her before. She appears occasionally when I walk down the street. Her beauty is unquestioned. It's easy to not fully appreciate it when you're not in the right frame of mind. This spring, I saw her with a new appreciation and a I got that warm and fuzzy feeling. 

Her name is Stella. No, she's not my girlfriend. She's not even a human. She's a flower. With bright, yellow flowers that bloom in spring (and rebloom through the fall if you care for her properly), the Stella D'Oro Daylily  is a popular choice for Midwestern U.S. gardens. So I’ve accepted I can't have her all to myself, but that's okay. I want to spread the love to anyone who’s willing to care for and appreciate her. Because that warm and fuzzy feeling was certainly akin to the feeling of love. 


When I planted her in early spring, she was a small collection of lush green leaves. I couldn't wait for her to bloom, but knew I had to be patient and let nature's process take it's course. Spring weather was not kind with very wet and cold days. The constant rain relieved me of my watering duties, but I hoped there wasn't too much water! Sure enough, the foliage started to become comfortable in it's new home and add some size, followed by the makings of a flower bud. When she finally bloomed, I was awe-struck! There's something about the fact that I planted and cared for that plant myself. I don't have any kids, but I imagine this feeling is like a very scaled down and accelerated version of raising a kid and watching him or her grow up to be something special. I now have a 'relationship' with this daylily and the other plants in my garden. In the case of perennials like this one, it can last for years. I can't wait for what the future holds. 

What is love? It's an age-old question that even has a song named after it. From an evolutionary perspective, we develop loving relationships in order to procreate. In turn, we develop love for our children, brothers and sisters in order to support each other throughout our lives for the purpose of continuing to pass our shared genes on to future generations. It's drilled into our evolved human psyche to make these connections as they are mutually beneficial to survival.

We also domesticated animals for the purpose of survival. Along that vein, our ancestors used dogs for more practical purposes than playing fetch and cuddling. They were so helpful to us that those who developed a true connection with these dogs were the ones that survived. This connection we have with our furry friends has lasted the test of time. Do I love Brody, my golden retriever? You bet I do. I think that one was love at first sight. I mean look at him...



So, if we can love dogs almost as much as we love other humans, it logically follows that the same love can be sparked with plants. They may not ask you how your day was or wag their tail when you come home, but if take care of them, your love will bloom.   


Lawson Thalmann

Business Technology Manager & Meditation Leader at Chalet

Lawson balances and blends his work with his lifestyle at his family’s people-centric and nature-inspired business. He helps to keep it on the cutting edge of the garden center and landscape design industries through digital transformation, in which he uses his unique eye for technology and his love for solving business problems. Specifically, Lawson brought the retail business online which has grown tremendously. With a knack for technology and a love for the outdoors, he’s passionate about finding a way to keep humankind’s forward progress strong while not pulling us away from the simple things that make us happy. He is constantly looking for ways to improve day-to-day life exemplified by his meditation practice which he leads regularly at Chalet, in his Chicago community and at Northwestern where he is a an MBA candidate. The positive feedback he has been given is one of the most rewarding experiences of his life and allows him to re-connect with the community that has kept his business strong for generations.