Saturday, November 30, 2013

Walking Dead Container Garden

Zombie needs her roots done.
I'm Baaack!  Like a bad Chucky doll.  Or a zombie from The Walking Dead.

A series of fortunate events had my friend Lisa and I without plans for Thanksgiving, so I made her an offer:  If she would drive from the beach where she lives, to my house in GA, I'd find where they film The Walking Dead.
  TV isn't my thing and slasher movies less so, but Lisa has different taste. She was in the car within minutes.

Yes, this is a gardening post.  If you are looking for zombies on a holiday bring a shovel.  A holiday is probably the only day you would be able to dig up...

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Get Centered

Photo: Ashmont Landscaping & Lawn's FB
It's hard to find the center that balances me when the weather is cold and rainy, I am too tired to bake cookies and I don't have a warm, humid greenhouse to retreat into.

Today... I will...

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Drive-Through Autopsies for Chickens

The cosmos realigned today.  Remember from the Eagles post that I am a magnet for bizarre experiences?  The kids asked me if today was the weirdest.  For sure, it is in the running.

It's been a tough month for our pets, then this morning I found White Out the hen deceased inside the chicken door of the coop.

I waited hours before I told the kids.  They felt we needed an autopsy.  Although she may have died of trauma (remember the hawk from earlier in the week?) getting a certain diagnosis would be a relief.

Baby A (the older twin) found what we needed.  He chose the Backyard Chickens website because it sounded more personal.  A sweet glimpse into the arrangements he'll make for me one day.  As he followed the links to the Georgia Poultry Lab and discovered it wasn't far from us he added, "Oh good.  There is an address where you mail the chicken."  Hmm.  Maybe I'll make my own arrangements for the afterlife?

What are the odds the state poultry testing center would be 12 miles from my house?  The boys handed me a garbage bag, reminded me to wear gloves (twice) and...

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Root Almost Anything And Get In Harmony With Nature. In 3 Paragraphs.

The quick and easy secret to rooting (propagating) almost anything is to put the cutting in a clear glass with water (somebody will ask that) in a sunny window when the day lengths are getting longer.

Even woody plants will usually root using this method.  Soft stemmed plants will...

Friday, November 22, 2013

Not-Your-Neighbors' Christmas Tree

It's a lemon tree!

And a key lime tree!  They are big and pretty and I have seen and sold a bunch at my garden center so I can tell you with authority - these are beautiful!  As beautiful as any ever bought for less than $200.

I'm still trying to get good pictures of them, but I promised I would share my awesome gardening find.  It's a lemon tree and a key lime tree!

If you have never smelled a citrus flower, you can't imagine the olfactory euphoria that awaits!  You will never want to breathe out again.

These beautiful trees have numerous clusters of flowers opening too.

We plan on...

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Cricket Effect

There is a cricket with a special flair for acoustics in my garage.  For all the world, it sounds like three crickets if it weren't for the impossible synchronisation of the chirping and more specifically the breaks in the chirping.

It brought me to wondering how I can make my output triple with the same amount of work.

But I can't tell you today because I've had no sleep.  There was a herd of crickets in my garage keeping me awake all night.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Eleanor Roosevelt And The Hawk

Redneck tomato cage
In Eleanor Roosevelt’s autobiography (get ready, she really liked to write) she recommends getting the house specialty at every restaurant.  The people who work there know what's good, so believe them.

Here's your inside tip from a farmer (me): wash the root crops.  Really well.  Carrots.  Potatoes.  Onions.  Things that grow under the ground are root crops and especially if they are organic, they grow in compost.  You know what that's made of, right?

In fact, just wash all the vegetables.  YES!  WASH THE ORGANIC veggies!  They are fertilized with poo and fish guts.  The organic pesticides are made from...

Take A Churchill Break

Don't know what it is, but it's willing to grow!
"A change is as good as a break."   That's what Winston Churchill said.  And then he took up painting.  And bricklaying.  And other stuff.

Let's get back to the garden.

Strange things have been happening in the garden.  The beet seedlings are fading like my engineering career after college.  They completely don't seem to understand that I have planted them into a place where they should thrive.  I've been there, beets.  Some things just don't work.  I might be one of them.

Some seedlings ARE sprouting in the place where the beets were transplanted.  I don't know what they are, but they look like something with tough leaves.  Maybe broccoli or kale.  That's the same bed where the artist previously known as parsley sprouted.  Turns out it was cilantro.  I should probably keep a record of what I've planted.  Or tried to plant.  That's what happens when you dump all the old seeds from the cabinet into the garden.  A lot of guess-the-seedling games.

I had resigned myself to an entire bed of cilantro and was trying to think of a food that would benefit from its special dirty-dishwater flavor when...Seems cilantro sprouts ...

Monday, November 18, 2013

Motivational Monday

Start by doing anything.
And you will get something.
Grab the day and make it what you want it to be.

It's motivational Monday.  Another chance to start out on the right foot.  Another chance to tame those problems.  We will not call them problems today.  Today they are just items on a list that need to get taken care of.

The storm woke me up at 3 a.m. and despite taking the sleeping medication, I am still awake.  It's 5:30 now.  No point in going back to bed.  So I heated up some day-old tea and grabbed a ring pop out of the Halloween candy still on the stairs.  You see, on Motivational Monday, whatever steps are needed are taken to set the tone for the week.

And maybe I should get back to plant stuff?  Lest you think I live a blessed existence, I'll share a little of what I'm up against right now:

Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Rest of the Story...Button

The button to find the rest of any given blog post is in the lower left-hand corner of the blurb.  It says:  Read More... in blue

This post does not continue, but most of them do and a lot of the questions people send are answered in the second half of the story they refer to, so I know they didn't get there.

Questions are important!  You won't know if you don't ask - just like getting a raise!
So leave as many questions as you can think of below!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Glenn Frey and Timothy B. Schmit Are In My Garden. Not. Darn.

Remember how Nature Loves Lazy Gardeners?  Well, lets hope Google loves lazy bloggers too.
Did you miss me?  Did you notice I was gone?  It hasn't really been that long, it just feels like a lifetime.

This adventure will be with me for a long time.  Forever, like when that state trooper took my road kill home for himself.  But this one is stunning in a good way.

I haven't even checked the garden.  I guess that's on the list for today.  Meanwhile, back on the Island, Gilligan... went to an Eagles concert in Knoxville.  That's where I've been.  If you can get tickets you should totally go.  I bought the VIP package.  Didn't need that 401k anyway.  Tickets in the second row!  Oh, it gets better.  Wayyyy better...
You know how sometimes at a concert the singer will call somebody out of the audience and get them up on stage?  Keep dreaming folks.  I'm not that cute.  But...

Sunday, November 10, 2013

What To Plant In November!

This is not a garden plant.
Snow is on the way for many people, limiting what you can plant in November.

You should all move South.  Just for the winter.  You wouldn't like the summers here.

Yesterday I cleared one 4x8 bed of luffa vines.  It must have frosted again on a day when it wasn't expected, because sure as shootin' my basil plant in the garden is all the way dead now.  The basil plants on the porch are ok.  They will be known from now on as the basil plants in the house.

I piled on some old grass clippings and turned it over (the garden, not the basil.)  I dug deeply enough to bring up clay with each shovel full.  

Then I planted...

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Get Some Sun

Things.  Happen.  Or get stuck and don't happen.  Progress doesn't always get made.  But waiting for progress takes time and during that time stuff continues to grow: the carrots, the weeds, the kids.

So today, step away from all those things that are clogging the pipeline and walk into the area where things grow - without you if you are waiting on progress.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

You Are Good - Just Compare

Have you barb-wired the perimeter and started keeping pigs in the front yard?   Then you are still fine.
p.s. I didn’t think of this – it really happened.

One of the proven ways to become happier is to compare yourself to people who are not as well off as yourself.  It's called the Social Comparison Theory.  It sounds kind of shallow but we all do it, on purpose or not.  So, just wallow in it guiltlessly every once in a while.

Here are more from my experience:

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Was the Dehydrator a Good Purchase?

Pretty View
Oh yes!  The dehydrator ran almost continuously for a week after it arrived.  I have two, quart-sized baggies of dried tomatoes and one of peppers.  

Success came early when the recipe I had hoped to recreate was recreated and DELISH!  It's the new go-to recipe because it only involves three prep steps:

Monday, November 4, 2013

A Tasty Way to Eat Squash- For Real

This is not squash soup because I ate all the squash soup.
Breakfast today was an orange, but I really, really wanted it to be Halloween candy.  

Last night was squash soup and asparagus.  It was really good.  I wasn't expecting it to be so good.  So good, that by dinner time there was not enough soup.  Nobody in the family really wanted to try it anyway, so I ...

Friday, November 1, 2013

Happy November!

Happy November!

You sure can!  Plant stuff in November.  It's time to start watching the weather though.  In most of the "South" the first frost is around Halloween and we've had ours.

When you plant in the late fall and winter, you need to look for a few days of warm temperatures and if you aren't going to water - some rain.

If you have those on the horizon, feel free to plant any of the items in the September and October planting schedules.  

Check back for regular instalments of the November planting guide!

A Big Garden Is Like A Big House

I should thank the deer for alleviating my guilt.  I believe this winter is going to be a cold one and I remember when it snowed a few years ago.  The deer broke through the protective covering over the broccoli and ate everything.  In hindsight, it saved the broccoli from being abandoned completely and it gave me an excuse to quit gardening in the  cold weather, which was going to happen anyway.

A big garden is like a big house, except you can't hire someone to clean it as easily.  If you want a life outside of weeding...