Tuesday, February 23, 2010

My own little garden greenhouse

I am trying something new this year. Lee bought me a contraption that looks like a giant garment bag with 4 shelves. The shelves will hold 3 trays each of starter pots. The whole thing is covered with a clear plastic cover. It has a door with zippers on each side which gives you wonderful access. I have never had any luck with tiny seeds, this year I am determined. Did you know that the wave petunias are around $3.00 a package of seed? That they take 90 days to bloom? Which is why I planted them the 1st of February. Each seed is coated with something. I use my buddy's toilet paper roll method for the dirt but I only filled the roll 2/3 up with potting soil, the last 1/3 I used a very light sprouting mix. My thinking is that the light sprouting soil won't support the root growth needed. I watered everything well with a turkey baster put the trays in there , put a heating pad in a plastic bag set on medium on the bottom shelf and zipped it up. Most of them sprouted!! Yea!! I have gotten this far many times, Some thing happens between here and the second leaves. I am hoping that this closed, moist enviroment will make the difference. I haven't had to water them in a whole week. Everyday or so I spray a little fine mist into each shelf area. What do I do next? I could use some garden tips for fine seeds.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Pavlov Had Nothing on My Mother

Many of us remember that Pavlov was a scientist that always fed these dogs to the sound of a buzzer. Over time the sound caused the same response in the animals as the smell or sight of food.

Extreme salivation

I think it’s called conditioning.
My premise is that many parents, worldwide, unwittingly use this as a training method for their children. The most heinous use of this conditioning is in potty training. Mothers, turning on the water in the wash basin to encourage their tots to make the same sound in the potty.
Future gardeners beware.
Now, I never asked my Mother and she never said but I have empirical proof that this diabolical method was used on me. As a young person you don’t even realize this has happened. As you reach your senior years the conditioning reasserts itself with a vengeance.
An avid gardener, I love to be outside. The day slips away before you know it. At some point during the day you begin to realize that you have to go.
“In a minute,” you tell yourself. You are vaguely aware that this happens several times. You’re busy and you keep putting it off, not wanting to spend a second of this beautiful day inside.
Finally it’s almost time to start dinner. Just one more quick thing!
And you turn on the hose!
Thanks, Mom

Sunday, February 7, 2010

A Prairie Dog's Rebuttal

In a previous blog my blog-buddy described prairie dogs as “just big, mean, and ugly brown”. I read that blog and I was so shocked I couldn’t believe that AP hadn’t had her eyes checked in the last few years and had lost her mind when it came to describing things!
I thought of the huge village of prairie dogs that live close to Lowe’s and beside the hospital. I love the prairie dogs, love, love, love them. They are a pretty brown and so fat that when they run it’s more like a ball of fur rolling along. They have shiny hair, the cutest little button brown eyes, and need braces on their teeth so badly that they look like they are smiling all the time.
When Petco was built they had to move their entire village further to the west, and managed to do it before any of the heavy construction started. They live on 17th Street and the intersection of highway 61, and they are pretty street-smart little animals - it is rare to see one squashed on the road.
Every trip to Lowe’s requires a detour to the back of the lot where I can sit in the car and talk to them. They seem to like to visit, they stand up by their tunnel and chatter right back to me – we smile at each other, something people don’t do too much these days.
They must build the most inventive tunnels, some end right at the curb of 17th street, and they will stand there and watch the cars go by, and yes, I always slow down, roll down the window and say “hi little guys”.
Now, here is the point that AP and I would merge on thoughts, while I love watching them play and run around and I like their village of tunnels, I do not want one for a pet and I absolutely do not want one (or a colony) in my yard. I can understand why farmers and ranchers don’t want them in the pasture, but no one is ever going to farm or ranch behind Lowe’s, so it’s a good home for them.
And the moral of this blog must be –
Beauty is in the Eyes of the Beholder! (And I am a prairie dog beholder!!)