To Plant or to uproot? That is the question.

Brace yourselves, my dear blog devotees (mom, you already know)

but this blog is about to get a whole lot darker.


And that’s not even because Halloween is coming.

The universe has thrown my family a curve ball and the research facility where my husband works, the whole reason why we were plunked down in Rochester, is closing.

Once again, we are faced with the possibility of becoming


The next few days and weeks will be hard. Getting transplanted has many implications, big and small, on almost every facet of one’s life.

Take my passion for gardening, for example.

For nearly 13 years, I have continually worked in the gardens around my house. I’ve battled invasive creeping ivy; clearing it out to create a shade garden of hosta and ferns  and Solomon Seal in my back garden.

I had yews removed to create a perennial garden in one of the only truly sunny spots on our property. Over the years, I’ve planted peony, roses, lavender, and countless other varieties.

After over a decade, the garden is finally looking established.

And now, I guess I’ll have to leave it all behind.

So, faced with the very real possibility of moving. what do I do now with the crocus and tulip bulbs I bought


Before we got the news that has pulled the rug out from my family’s feet?

Do I plant bulbs this fall that I may not get to see bloom in the spring?

I know that as my family faces the monumental “ifs” of moving, the subject of some stupid bulbs may seem – stupid. But at this point of the transplanting game, it’s about all I can handle.

About 11 years ago, in another event that changed EVERYONE’s lives forever, I had similar thoughts about bulbs.

We were all still reeling from the 9/11 terrorist attacks. In October, the War on Terror had begun with strikes in Afghanistan. There were reports of anthrax being spread through the mail. Remember how everyone was stocking up on bottled water and duct tape in case of a dirty bomb? Or a bio weapon of mass destruction?

No one knew what was coming next.

That fall, I watched and listened to way too many grim reports from the media.  It left me in a serious blue funk.

So, I planted bulbs. They gave me hope, they gave me some sense of control of what I could be certain of for the following spring.

So now, in this one miniscule detail in the mountain of details one faces on the prospect of moving, I’ve got two bags of bulbs.

I can plant them for either me, if we stay here, or the new owners of my house.

Or, I can give them away to friends for them to enjoy.

If you knew you wouldn’t be around the same town to see your garden in the spring, what would you do?

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About stacylynngittleman

I have been a reporter and public relations professional for over 30 years, specializing in profile features and investigative longform writing. During my career I've profiled WWII Honor Flight Veterans, artists and musicians and have written on topics that range from environmental and gun control issues to Jewish culture. Click around on my writing samples plus read my blog on my personal life raising three kids over 27 years and three cities.

5 responses to “To Plant or to uproot? That is the question.”

  1. Tammy says :

    You know, when we bought the house that we live in, I was so touched to see freesia and amarylis popping up in the spring. It was such a treat for me and made me feel like it really was a home meant for me.


    • transplantednorth says :

      thanks. Yes, when i moved into this house, right at the beginning of my first Rochester winter, to see the plants pop up in the Spring was truly a reward. I’ll keep most of my perennials in the ground and, thanks to my cousin’s suggestion, will donate those bags of bulbs to the preschool where my kids attended.


  2. Sidra Shapiro Boshes says :

    If you have to leave Rochester I hope it is to another city with Wegmans!


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