‘Adopt a Plant’ Day

2017/3/24 9:47:02

Every year, on 22nd March, we celebrate a very special day: World Water Day. It might not be as popular as Earth day which will take place exactly one month later, but it is no less important.

This event, coordinated by the United Nations, tries to not only celebrate how precious water it is to all life forms in our planet, but also to raise awareness of how fragile it is, our misuse, and the lack of the right to clean water for many other beings that share this Earth with us.

While most events tend to focus on the access to water and sanitation, SJTU students decided to use plants. Plants are necessary to life, not only they produce the food we and many animals eat, but also give us the oxygen we breath and some of them even clean the air from pollutants. Areas full of trees attract rainfall and their roots help the soil gain water retention. Although without them, we wouldn’t survive, many busy urbanites seem to have forgotten they play such a crucial role in our lives.

Plant adoption is a small and indirect way to spread the idea that plants, and nature in general, need to be taken care of. About 500 plants were sent to Minhang campus, while SIPA students in Xuhui campus received 70. All the plants were sponsored by a company that kindly donated them for this activity. We are very thankful for that!

Students set up a table in front of the school and offered people passing by the chance to adopt a little plant. Then they shared tips about how to care for them and make them grow healthy.

The plants offered were small succulents, very popular in China. Not only they are easy to grow, but many people love to make indoor decorations with them, adding coloured stones or even set up miniature gardens with figurines.

Since cacti are succulents too, you can guess that these plants do not need plenty of water. In fact, in winter, due to humidity and lack of heat, they only need watering every 1-2 months, while in summer they might need water once or twice a week. Plants must be watered thoroughly every time and let the water drain out from underneath the pot. Never place a plate underneath! Otherwise the roots will certainly rot.

People seemed excited to adopt a plant and learn how to take care of it, men and women, old and young alike. When the rain stopped, our students moved to the entrance of the cafeteria to continue the adoption. They did not expect that so many people would like to take the little greens home!

In just a couple of hours, the dozens of plants were gone. They found a home they would give valuable oxygen in exchange for water and love. Exactly how our students know we should treat all plants.

Happy World Water Day!

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