Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Gardening attempts

Or, if you throw enough crap at the wall, some is bound to stick.

I have a bit of a dark brown thumb. Gardening is not my thing. I basically stick stuff in the ground, threaten it,  and if it dies, I rip it out and may or may not try again. But this year I finally succumbed to Sweet Daughter’s request for a bigger garden plot. Her current space is about 24” x 24” -- small enough to weed and water while waiting for the school bus. But she wanted more.

It started with the sunflowers. And that meant finding a place to put them (how about in the corner of the yard by the 6’ tall section of fence?). Which meant digging up the blasted Bermuda grass and the Virginia Creeper, and putting down some real dirt, and a landscaping timber or two. The discounted tulips that were past their best at Easter? Why not? They were cheap. Then there were the extra annuals for the containers in the front of the house. And then a Black-Eyed Susan was strategically placed in front of the great gaping hole in the boxwood. And, holy cow, those Crape Myrtles sure do grow quickly. These came up from a long forgotten network of roots, popping up during a dry spell one summer when the grass wasn’t growing. Violets were transplanted from my sister’s farm so we’ll always have part of it at our house. A $1 pack of “wildflower” seeds meant knocking together something resembling a raised bed so they could contained. Luckily there’s a pile of old timbers from the previous owners, or that would have ended up being a $20 pack of seeds.

And we can't forget the marigold that SD coveted and earned by helping the "Plant Lady" at our last reenactment.
Then there are the redbuds. I love redbud trees, and I seem to find a volunteer each year that gets painstaking transplanted, and invariably mowed over. (Call it aggressive pruning.) Well, I’ve moved two so far this spring, found a third, and the one that got mowed flat last year is coming back. So far, so good.
And then I discovered the “scratch and dent” section in the nursery at Lowes. Why not? I’d rather kill a $5 blueberry bush than a $10 one (and after killing 4 in the past few years, these are both are doing very well, thank-you-very-much). And that’s when SD saw the raspberries. “Momma! Look! Raspberries! You love raspberries! Think of the money you’ll save!” I grabbed one, liked the price and put it on the cart. Then the nice gentleman with the mullet and muscle shirt came running over with two more. (No, I have no idea what that was about.)  I managed to resurrect the Catawba grape that got mowed last year. I planted a Carolina Jasmine to cover the chain-link fence. I started some morning glories from seed. I put in some more herbs. I put an azalea in under an oak tree where it’s hard to mow. I pruned back and Shorter Half moved about 20 Barberry bushes to the other side of the fence, closer to the road.
SD got a larger section of flower garden, and plants were procured. Seeing Breda’s tomatoes shamed me into planting a couple of my own. Roma? Safe. Then I picked a variety at random … a Jet Star. Low acid, good for eating and cooking, it said. I got it home and read the fine print. Grows four to six feet tall. Really? Any suggestions on what to use for a tomato cage or should I just ask what what caliber? Attack of the killer tomatoes is right.


  1. Plant it next to a trellis. Tie up as required.

  2. Sounds like you're doing great. Just wait until the fruit trees go on sale.

  3. If you can't find anything 6 feet tall, it will just spread out on the ground. Guess there's nothing stopping a person from trimming it back, too, which would probably help to make bigger tomatoes, anyway.

  4. For your tomatoes.

    Mosin's with bayonets, should come out to just the right height.

  5. "I basically stick stuff in the ground, threaten it, and if it dies, I rip it out and may or may not try again."


    I resist the green thumb at all costs. Every year I wish for enough ROUNDUP to turn my lawn a deep golden brown so that it doesn't have to be cut. The rest of the flora runs wild.

  6. LOL, fun is being had, right???