88°Mostly Cloudy

“The Plant had been in the family for generations that traveled from Mississippi to Texas to Ohio and finally to DC”

by Prince Of Petworth June 13, 2017 at 9:30 am 18 Comments

From the files of people can be awful vol. 77 – porch thieves. I wish there were a way to track down this plant but that does not seem likely. Saw this sad report on the Petworth listserv yesterday:

“I had a planter stolen off my front porch Sunday morning at 4:11am @ 5th & Randolph. It was a plant that had been in the family for generations that traveled from Mississippi to Texas to Ohio and finally to DC.

I wanted to share the video in case anyone sees the person and warn everyone to safeguard items on the porch.”

  • why??????

    Is there any money in this? I mean could you even get $5 for stealing a plant? What is the blackmarket plant market like in DC? Where does one go to fence a plant?

    • Truxton Thomas

      I mean, people give away unwanted plants on Craigslist all the time, so maybe this criminal mastermind just likes this one in particular.

    • HaileUnlikely

      I can’t speak to the veracity of the following, but I have heard that people steal them for the purpose of obtaining free pots in which they then grow other things.

  • ET

    People do steal the weirdest stuff. Someone stole my $2 Target flamingo that was spray painted twice. Honestly that is just so pathetic.

  • MissHobartStreet

    I’m sorry that something that was special to OP was stolen. However, having lived in this city for 14 years now, I would never leave anything that mant ANYTHING to me out on my porch and not behind a locked door. Given the history this plant has in your family, I’d think you would keep it in your home or at the very least behind a locked gate outback. Trust. No. One.

  • anon50

    why is the ring motion sensor so poor? I own one as well,, but am considering scrapping it since it frequently begins to record far too late. It seems the PIR can’t handle approaching movement, just lateral. Any better products that won’t break the bank?

    • Duponter

      Nest outdoor camera would have been better in this situation. Or really any actual security camera. I often think when people have inconspicuous cameras, you lose the deterrence effect.

    • Breezy

      I have vivint and it’s crystal clear.

      • stacksp


        Same here.

  • Duponter

    I’d keep my eyes peeled, OP. That person was clearly walking down the street and probably saw an opportunity when he may not have otherwise been looking for it. So chances are he’ll be walking down the street again. I can’t imagine someone was casing the joint for a plant or randomly came here just to steal a plant.

    • I dunno, Father’s Day is coming up. Maybe this is similar to stealing flowers for Mom on Mother’s Day, for a Dad with a green thumb?

  • cx20020

    Maybe he wanted the pot it was in and not the actual plant. At the risk of sounding patronizing, have you walked around a few blocks and looked to see if the plant was actually dumped somewhere?

    • MadMax

      Yeah, it looks like it’s just elephant ears? Not much value in the plant, so maybe it was a nice pot.

  • AJ

    Growing up, my mom used to have quite a few indoor plants that she took out for the summer. She’d “lose” one every third Mother’s Day like clockwork. She was someone’s own personal Behnke. After the first time, the nicer /older/more sentimental plants went on the deck even though the porch had better light.

  • Joshua

    That’s just awful. Makes you want to strangle that guy with his own hair extensions. I hope you get your plant back!

  • Franny

    I stopped tending to the tree box in front of my house (just left it all mulch) after 3 years of constant plant thefts where people would come and pull out bushes and plants and walk off with them. I mean, I’ve lived in some pretty rough and odd places in my life but have never seen such a “high energy” plant and bush stealing economy as I’ve experienced in DC.

    • textdoc

      FWIW, I’ve planted perennials (daylilies and irises) in my treebox and not had any thefts so far. And they were all from Freecycle, so even if they did get stolen, I’d be out only for the (not inconsiderable) cost of my own labor, rather than $$ for the plants themselves.

  • soulshadow55

    All of my pots have a small hole in the bottom. I buy thin chains and locks from Home Depot; before I add the soil and plants I slide the chain through the pot and lock it to the fence or stair railing. I don’t care if it looks silly. I bought my pots and plants because I want something nice on my porch and I’m not going to make it easy for someone to steal them. For the larger pots you can put three or four bricks in the bottom of the pot before adding the garden soil. The bricks displace the amount of soil you need to use (soil can be kind of expensive) and makes the pot too heavy to carry off.


Subscribe to our mailing list