Do you consider yourself a 'hoarder'?

subtropixJuly 19, 2011

So, last night I was watching that show that everyone loves to hate--"Hoarders".

I thought about the collecting bug and how it relates to the characters I see depicted in the show. There are some similarities but MAJOR differences as well. First off, I do think there is an obsessive quality to collecting massive numbers of plants from the four corners of the earth. We always manage to make room for one more plant--even at the expense of habitable space and our fiances. I have, over the years, acquired a massive collection of, you name it---palms, cacti, citrus, ferns, bananas,tropical fruit trees, herbs, and assorted other tropical and hardy plants. The difference is that everything has its own place and is organized. The interior house looks normal enough but the exterior shouts out Key West and points south! I'd love to say-- "Enough already!" But am sure I'll succumb to one more purchase. So, what about you? Are you through with new acquisitions or do you consider yourself an unrepentant, incurable "hoarder" of palms and other plants?

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Only plant I have been actually hoarding is Trachycarpus Takil!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 5:22PM
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earthworm73(WA z8)

I don't consider myself a hoarder but if you ask my wife she'll tell you different. She is the reason I am "starting over" with palms. It was easier to just get rid of everything than to listen to her brow beat me about hobby and the "mess it makes". So no I am not a hoarder just a palm hobbyist.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 5:26PM
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cfa_li(z7/8 Queens, NY)

I think I'm the only one on this board with no palm at all (YET), I'm automatically disqualified lol.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 6:05PM
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njoasis I believe your in denial. By definition I believe we are both hoarders. If anyone has seen my pics they would know that most of my plants are packed in pretty tight. I can't make a trip without bringing something home with me. And right now I have 2 orders that should arrive tomorrow.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 6:06PM
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"And right now I have 2 orders that should arrive tomorrow."

My mango tree arrives tomorrow--added to the subcollection of (sub) tropical trees (Guava, Loquats, Avocado, Date palms, pomegranate, figs, bananas, olives, and a dozen or so citrus trees from Kumquats to Grapefruits, coconuts, oh, almost forgot the papaya tree!). The tropicals go into either the basement or the garage. So the house looks "normal" in the Winter--just don't go in the garage in the Winter without a machete! And we won't even talk about the hardy, non-containerized plantings.--Happy huntin'.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 7:18PM
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I bought every sabal minor that my local Lowes, Home Depot and Walmart had this season. Does that constitute hoarding?

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 8:05PM
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Hunter_M(Kentucky Z.6)

Well, even if you consider yourself a hoarder, at least you are hoarding nice things instead of the junk thats on the show lol.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 8:31PM
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HardyPalmFreak((7b)(Bronx, NY))

I am a true palm guest bed room has no bed, but it does have space for 25 plants!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 9:10PM
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earthworm73(WA z8)

My wife does the extreme couponing Buying stuff in twos or threes just cuz she has a frickin coupon for it whether we need it or not. And she says I'm the one who has issues cuz I like palms? Yeah if I had my way 90% of the availible soil space at my house would be occupied with some kind of tropical. But if you do it right it looks good. It's hoarding when you don't have a plan and everything is everywhere without order. But if you keep it neat then it looks nice.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2011 at 12:06AM
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garyfla_gw(10 Florida)

Guess i would have to plead guilty lol. Worst were orchids got up to 250 in pots with another 75 on trees.
Had 65 palms ,can't resist a seed
Had ten aquariums and 4 ponds along with 4 terrariums lol
45 birds but only one cat lol. Have been downsizing the last couple of years Still have over 100 orchids 25 palms about 25 aroids and gingers and a dozen gesneriads which I can't part with. 6 birds, one pond, and 2 aquariums but only one terrarium. No reptiles or amphibians or mammals so I have made progress.
Might mention that my entire lot is only 75x100 feet !!!
My goal is to get the maintenence to no more than an hour a day max!! gary

    Bookmark   July 25, 2011 at 4:49AM
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If it didn't give you so much pleasure, you wouldn't do it. Don't worry, many of us understand. My collecting bug involves mostly palms, citrus, some orchids, aroids, Ficus, cacti and succulents, bromeliads, magnolias, ferns (hardy & tropicals), and tropical fruit trees. Also run a mini-shelter for feral and abandoned cockatiels, one iguana, and two rescue cats.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2011 at 7:02AM
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After some thought, I would have to say that, yes, I am a hoarder. I suppose there are worse obsessions.

I always liked plants, but it intensified when we bought our house with a yard just begging to be terraformed. It started with hardy palms. Then bananas. Then I moved onto Citrus (got another coming later this week). Moved on to Figs (only 3 at this time).

In between I've planted yuccas, cacti, pomegranate, and germinated all kinds of things.

I am eyeing Feijoa and maybe an Avacodo tree for next year in addition to the inevitable impulsive purchases.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2011 at 4:11PM
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Jacklord, are you sure you want to expand into tropical fruit?! You have been warned!!

Current tropical fruits:

Coconut (Malay Dwarf)
Dwarf Papaya
Guava (Ruby Supreme)
Simpson's Avocado
Persian Lime
Key Lime
Mamey zapote (Pouteria zapota)
Eureka Lemon
Meyer's Lemon
Kumquat (Meiwa)
Kumquat (Nagami)
Satsuma Mandarin
Ruby Red Grapefruit
Valencia Orange
Washington Navel Orange
Moro Blood Orange
Sea Grape
Dwarf Orinoco Banana
Dwarf Cavendish Banana
Raja Puri Banana
Brown Turkey Fig
Celest Fig
Dragon Fruit
Glen Mango

I just purchase some Jackfruit in order to plant its seeds. I fried it up with a bit of salt (and decided to add a bit of garlic). Delicious, exotic combination of banana sweet and onion. I know it sounds gross but we LOVED it and of course now I have to have a Jackfruit tree. The nice thing about the fruits is that often you can start them from an inexpensive trip to the grocery store--that's how I started the Mamey Zapote, Avocado, Mango, Loquat,and Seville/Sour Oranges.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2011 at 7:31PM
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orchiddude(+7b ALabama) make a good point. I have never thought of it this way before. I agree with the key west thing too. I even went so far as to build a tiki bar to go with

    Bookmark   August 5, 2011 at 7:47AM
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NoVaPlantGuy_Z7b_8a(Alexandria, VA 7B/8A)

Hoarder? No. Enthusiastic collector? Yeah. The difference being that someone that collects things does that for pleasure and enjoyment. And with plant's that is even more true as plants don't just sit around and collect dust. They require an active investment of time and effort. I suppose it could GET TO a point where it would be hoarding, but again, if they were neglected they would just die and become trash taking up space.

People who hoard do so for many reasons, not the least of which is they feel some sort of attachment to things. Like they cant live without them. So, even meaningless things like a movie ticket from a film you loved you saw with an old friend 15 years ago becomes in their minds, priceless. Once something in the brain starts to change, and it turns into hoarding, I think there is a point that is reached where it just becomes overwhelming. Too much "stuff" to handle and that is where it spirals out of control. Things can trigger that too. Death of a good friend, loved one, or spouse can cause someone to find something as an emotional surrogate / replacement which leads to hoarding.

I think most plant collectors are more just that. Perhaps sometimes the collections get a little out of control, or too much for a person to care for sure, but mainly I don't think its hoarding. Now, if every available space in your living space and / or outside is covered in pots, and all you have is little paths to get from one place to another, well , yeah. Maybe then you have a problem. LOL. I could never personally live like that. The sad thing is, that people do do that, and sometimes they do it with other living things, including animals. There was just a woman caught around here who had 250+ animals in her home. SOmething like 100 cats, 75 rabits, 25 birds...etc. Feces 8" deep on the floor in places,and dead animals found stuck under piles of trash. It was horrific. Some of the animals had to be euthanised, but the majority were able to be cared for and adopted out. There are still some animals left from that house currently being adopted out to forever homes in fact.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2011 at 10:06AM
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IC have to say that hardy palms and bananas really "helped " me with my tropical plant hoard. I used to be a military fly boy traveling to all sorts of tropical island in a cargo plane. Get the picture? My DC area condo was small, but sunny. The balcony was a jungle in summer. It was tough finding room inside in the winter, the got infested and water / dirt spills made a mess.

Moving to my beach house Made me thin out the jungle. With a milder
winter climate next to the ocean has
allowed me to keep the few potted tropical potted plants outside about two extra month -- out earlier in spring and back in much later in fall.

But being able to plant hardy palms and
bananas satisfies my needs. I don' t
have to winterize the varieties I have
planted, so they have been easy to care
for. I have my first pindo, so will get a
small taste of what many of you have to
do in the winter.

While I have added many more palms this year and have dozens of seedlings coming up from handfuls of windmill
and sabal seeds, my palm hoarding is kept neatly out in the garden!

    Bookmark   August 5, 2011 at 2:13PM
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My plant 'hoarding' goes into one of the rooms in the basement (for the more tender palms) and an old barn that was converted into a large garage, then I got it and converted it into the winter 'oasis' for moderately hardy palms (mostly Phoenix, Washys, and Queens), a large citrus collection, and cycads--having replaced the panels of the garage doors with glass. It faces due south and gets direct sun--especially in Winter when the sun's angle is lower. I've been busy working in this garage--cleaning, organizing, painting, staining original wood, etc.. then it hit me, oh my G-d, I'm designing my 'man cave' (not that there's anything wrong with that). Except for the refrigerator filled with beer and my camping equipment, the cave is empty but come the Winter, you need a machete to get in and enter at your own risk! At the same time, I hate clutter and get rid of anything I don't use/need. Nova, I agree, 'enthusiastic collecting' is NOT the same as 'hoarding'. Though I do not consider collecting in and of itself a problem or dysfunctional, there is an obsessive/compulsive element to it--not that there is anything wrong with that either!

    Bookmark   August 5, 2011 at 2:51PM
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I say I'm a Collector---My Partner says BIG TIME HOARDER!

I suppose Obsessed Bromeliad Enthusiast is fair term...


    Bookmark   September 15, 2012 at 2:40AM
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Funny thread. OK hoarders please show me your shameful stashes!!

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 1:49AM
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good thing I will never be considered a hoarder...

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 3:35AM
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