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Thursday, January 31, 2008

Money Tree Plant

I haven't started gardening at my new place so there's not much to show you for this month's garden update. Afterall, I'm sure you're probably sick of seeing my geraniums. So I decided to show you the only houseplant I have -- my money tree plant. I'm too old to really get li xi (Vietnamese lucky money envelopes) for the Lunar New Year. So when I occasionally still get an envelope, I hang it on my tree. (And in today's mini-rant, it's lunar! LUNAR! Lunar New Year! The Chinese aren't the only ones who follow the lunar calendar you know.) Incidentally, if you look closely at the envelopes, you'll see they're from several different banks. Yes, folks, one of those "Sooo SoCal" things, is that not just Chinese banks but Wells Fargo and Bank of America provide complimentary red envelopes for their customers at this time of year. Better get your request in before they run out since the LUNAR New Year is only a week away! Are these available in NorCal? They weren't when I lived there a decade ago... I bought my plant on clearance at Target long ago for dirt cheap. It's easily quadrupled in size since then. If you'd like one, I've seen them sold at the Farmers' Market in Alhambra and Chinatown. Incidentally, I was chatting with a friend in Vietnam yesterday, and she was describing her house and wanted to know the Vietnamese word for houseplant. None of my dictionaries had houseplant. I came up empty on Vdict.com. I suggested cay nho o trong nha (little plant inside the house). Any of my Vietnamese readers got a better suggestion? Happy Lunar New Year everyone! ***** 1 year ago today, a repurposed vinegar bottle as a vase for some roses.


  1. That's how we do it back home too :D
    Hand red lucky envelopes on a plant, and even stick them on the door! Hahahha...

    Happy Chinese New Year! Do you celebrate?

  2. i didn't know that some banks gave them out. i know they didn't when we lived in new orleans. but the price of the envelopes seems like it keeps going up every year. glad it will be a long time before i have to give any out.

  3. Yes, banks in Northern California give out the red envelopes. The lucky money that I get from my mother in SF always have the logo from some bank.

    You probably have to ask at banks that are located in Asian business districts.

  4. Say, how do you keep yours so healthy? Details please. :)

  5. No idea on translation for "houseplant". My Vietnamese is pretty scrummy and my vocab is limited even when it comes to food!

  6. Hehe, we have that plant at our house too, but w/o the red envelopes. I don't really like the designs on the banks ones, I prefer the ones that my mom finds in Chinatown, although I dunno where. Yeah it's annoying when ppl call it Chinese New Year, but I get tired of correcting ppl.

  7. Hi Reese! Sshhh! I don't use my real name on here. So here's your comment, minus my name. :P

    "Hi!! it's reese from don's dinner! just wanted to drop by and say hi!!!! and i had so much fun talking to you!! you know so much information! :) add me on facebook if you can!! <3"

  8. Tigerfishy,
    Lunar! Lunar New Year! And yes, Happy Lunar New Year to you too! :)

    I've only seen this in California b/c of the large Asian population so I wondered if anyone had seen it outside of CA, but I guess not.

    It's nice to know!

    Jan Frederick,
    Neglect? Hehe. Seriously, I just water it when I see the dirt is all dry. Maybe once a week? Otherwise, I leave it alone. Oh, and keep it out of direct sunlight.

    Limited vocab for food? How could you? ;)

    I just keep correcting them anyway. :)

    It was nice meeting you too. I had lots of fun. I added you! :)

  9. how about just cay nha? tree house. hahahaha.

    anyways i've started calling it just vietnamese new year.

    for example: my birthday is on vietnamese new year this year.

  10. Tania,
    Cay nha? Wouldn't it be the tree house you build playhouses in? :P

  11. Gung Hay Fat Choy! My mom is out in Southern California right now festivating as we speak. Up here in Portland I think some restaurant my be hanging a sign or something.

  12. GC,
    Happy New Year to you too! I know PDX has more than that!

  13. happy new year....thats how we did it here in Louisiana.....enjoy reading your blog!!!!


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