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A “Dear John” Letter to My Tree

Dear Pink Lemonade Tree-

I’m sorry Sir, but I have had it!

I have done everything I can to help you prosper and still, after five years, you have yet to produce a single decent crop for me. I have lovingly watered you, fed you, weeded the space below your branches and I get…nothing. I have given you more attention than any other citrus in my garden and you ignore my affection as if I don’t even exist.


Remember when you had that horrible outbreak of Mexican Leaf Miner? I didn’t judge you! I didn’t say a word, even though I knew you contracted it from fraternizing with Miss Lime down the way. Instead, I searched out an organic remedy and carefully treated you each week until you were nursed back to health. And then there was that time that one of your roots blocked the hole in the bottom of your pot. Who pulled you out, trimmed your roots and replanted you with that expensive, organic potting soil. Who? And what did you do? You did not even reward me with one pink lemon.

At first, I thought I was not giving you enough water. But you, my friend, are watered the same amount as the other four citrus trees in my garden. They are covered in fruit, while you lollygag around and do nothing.

Now, I admit that I was initially attracted to you on a purely physical level. I took one look at your variegated leaves and saw the photo of the pink fruit on your label and I was hooked. I always assumed that our relationship would grow into something deeper. But I have been the only one giving in this relationship. You, my friend, are just a taker. All I got from you were empty promises.

Would it kill you to produce one large, juicy pink lemon? Is that too much to ask? Well, apparently it is. You tease me with flowers and then drop the fruit before I have a chance to enjoy it. So cruel! The other citrus in my garden don’t do that.

So, as of next week I am replacing you. I have had my eye on a Meyer lemon tree for sometime now and he is already producing lush lemons…luring me. With him, I am appreciated. Sure, I am a pushover for someone that comes bearing gifts. I admit that. But you leave me no choice. I have given you five years of my life and it is time to move on. I am sorry it did not work out between us. Perhaps you can find someone else to shower you with affection. As for me? I am done.


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About the Author:

Theresa Loe is the founder of Living Homegrown® and the Canning Academy®. For 9 years, Theresa was the Co-Executive Producer & Canning Expert on the national PBS gardening series, Growing A Greener World®. Theresa homesteads on just 1/10th of an acre in Los Angeles with her husband, two sons and several disorderly but totally adorable chickens. Learn more about Living Homegrown here and about the Canning Academy here.