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Accessible Gardening: Practical Matters for Physically Challenged Gardeners #15

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Sansai87
Midland City, AL

July 31, 2012
1:00 PM

Post #9225019

Welcome to Practical Matters for Physically Challenged Gardeners #15. On this thread we discuss the day-to-day challenges of gardening and otherwise enjoying the outdoors when there is also some sort of physical limitation to contend with. Contributors here may be anything from mildly mobility challenged due to aging to those gardening from wheelchairs. The visually impaired can range from “can’t see those little seeds like I once could” to blind. Also, there are those coping with the energy deficits that are a part of Depression, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and heart/lung ailments. We are a diverse group. Feel free to join in.
We came from here. http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/1236334/
Photo 1,2 and 3. Crepe Myrtle
Photo 4 and 5. Trumpet Vine

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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

July 31, 2012
3:17 PM

Post #9225181

Thank you, Nadine, for continuing this thread!

I thought I understood the interaction between MS and heat from Boston -- I was way underinformed. Heat when it's 103* or 108* is HEAT. The 90* heat in Boston that made me have to go inside and have a cold drink was nothing. I could recover in an hour or so. This heat is blinding!!! I mean that metaphorically, of course, but there are people with MS whose vision gets better and worse with heat. My brain stops working, my body ceases to function (what little function it has left) and I fall asleep. Yikes!!!!

On the other hand, now I know what Crape Myrtle looks like first hand, and about fire ants and armadillos. Who knew? Love to all...I feel like I left everyone back in Boston.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

August 5, 2012
5:14 AM

Post #9230024

Carrie, We could all do without knowing about fireants. Am so glad they have'nt made it up the mountain.
Do like I do in summer. I stay inside from 9 AM till 7 PM unless i make a mad dash to my car.
I bought some yarn yesterday at Walmarts (ON SALE) and have been crocheting all day.
Jim called to see if i were still alive.I apoligise for hybernating. Depression is still king around here. Should get the results on some tests and do some more this week. The sleep test should be intresting. Am taking plenty to read as the TV goes off at 9:30.They said i could bring a stuffed toy but not my dog Cricket.LOL But I will be out of pocket Tuesday and Wednesday.
I was told I needed to walk everyday. But my knees won't hold up to walking. Probably would if I lost 30 lbs. Also can't breathe so good in hot air.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

August 6, 2012
11:09 AM

Post #9231734

Do you like blueberries, Carrie? I heard somewhere they help people with MS adapt better to stress conditions such as heat. I’ve don’t know of any scientific data that backs up that claim. However, I do know blueberry leaf tea was used to treat MS before there were effective pharmaceuticals. There is even a recipe called MS Scones. I suppose because it contains both blueberries and evening primrose seeds. Evening primrose was also once used to treat MS symptoms.
Jim called Vickie to make sure she was okay. She is hanging in while her doctors try to sort out some serious health problems. Nadi and Jim have let their DG accounts lag while we get some bills paid off. I have to tease and torment them in private now. It was much more fun teasing and tormenting them in a public venue. Lol.
July, August and December are our garden vacation times. I gather from things Debra said it is much the same there except for the humidity. Vickie mentioned serious drought conditions in her region. Is the DFW area experiencing drought as well? Wish I could share our rain. The ditch alongside our road is filled with water from this morning’s rain. I’m dreading what I will find when I go out to check for erosion damage.
We are preparing for the fall garden. We are going for edible landscaping in a big way. I’ve ordered ‘Bull’s Blood’ beets and giant red mustard greens for their maroon foliage. Planning to order ‘Bright Lights’ kale and a selection of colorful lettuces next month. Nadi says we should use the French name for an ornamental kitchen garden. That way what we are doing will sound hip and edgy instead of just frugal. So…we are planning our pottage (po-TA-sha). lol. There is a professional chef who maintains that the reason no one ever raves about British food is because 18th century garden fashion in Britain relegated their patages (kitchen gardens) to hidden places away from the house. Whereas, the French kept their ornamental kitchen gardens front and center. The easy access to herbs and other ingredients plus the visual inspiration of the pottage drove the development of French cuisine. I thought that was an interesting theory. k*

katiebear
mulege
Mexico

August 7, 2012
2:12 PM

Post #9233307

Hi - I've made it safely to Chula Vista, gotten tested, and seen my GP. Thursday I go to knee replacement surgery class and see my surgeon in the afternoon. If he clears me for surgery it will be next Tuesday.

Carrie, how can you think that you left ANYONE behind? We are all still here.

Vickie, depression is a b...ch. Don't every let anyone tell you otherwise. You have company, even when you hibernate, so there.

hugs, katie

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 8, 2012
4:29 PM

Post #9234825

Now I'm gonna cry, Katie. My stiff upper lip is trembling... My dose of Wellbutrin ('invigorating' anti-depressant) was lowered because I completely stopped sleeping when they took me off all the muscle relaxants. There's an extremely delicate balance between muscle relaxers, caffeinated coffee, Wellbutrin, sleep, Ambien (which doesn't put me to sleep, so that's out) and stress which got all screwed up after surgery March 20 and is still not fixed. I think I'm sleeping enough (which is a change) but I'm not sure if I'm taking enough Wellbutrin, because I've been feeling weepy recently. On the other hand, I think I'm under enough STRESS to break anyone.

No flowers here.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

August 9, 2012
6:07 AM

Post #9235386

Carrie, Is'nt there anything they can offer you besides Welbutrin. I was put back on prozac and it was much better. Course I know we are all different in how meds affect us.
Having your whole world upside down does tend to be stressful. Hang in there.
My hospital stay was postponed untill tonight.Since I was up allnight I should sleep.Yeah!!
Thanks Katie bear.We'll be thinking of you.Have you made arraingements for recouping?

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 9, 2012
12:44 PM

Post #9235825

Thinking of both of my sisters in surgery. ((Katie)) and ((Vicki))

Vicki, I NEED A DOCTOR! When I get a neuro-pharma-psychiatrist (or whatever), I am sure ALL my drugs will be re-evaluated and doses adjusted. I'm waiting for the Neuro dept. of SE Texas something to talk to the Rehab Dept. because that's the dept I hand delivered all my records to. I carefully made sure I gave them my physical copies of MRIs, office notes, my 18-page questionnaire, blahblahblah and they're saying they don't have it! I mean, the Rehab Dept has 'em but the Neuro Dept doesn't. (Down the hall.) Grrr.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

August 10, 2012
12:11 PM

Post #9236874

It seems like Jim ends up physically taking records from office to office ever time his VA doctors and civilian doctors interact. The offices usually blame it on his name. There are a lot of Jim Smith’s in the world. He says he would change his name if he really thought it would do any good.
Ooops! Writing in Office Word and having someone else post what I write obviously doesn’t work well. SOMEONE forgot to check for new post before putting mine on. I’m experimenting with running the NVDA program and the Zoomtext program together. They are playing amazingly well together. Well enough to give me access to the web again anyway. It drives Nadi up the wall when both programs start speaking at the same time, but that is a good thing. She finally returned the headphones she borrowed. ;-) Henceforth, all mistakes are my own.
Amen to Kb’s comment on Depression. It can twist around and bite you on the backside even when you have the symptoms under control. Just having Depression complicates and worsens other health problems.
You face change more bravely than many people I know, Carrie. Nadi grumbles for weeks if I do so much as move the furniture around. I’ve met quite a few people like that.
Will you have much trouble once you are back home, Kb? Are there many steps or stairs in your house? I’m so glad sprawling one-story houses are the norm here. I use the w/c ramp to the deck more than Jim does.
It is raining AGAIN and the low lying areas are already flooded. Man, do I ever wish it was possible to send you some of our rain, Vickie.
Cleaning and sharpening our garden hand tools today and praying for the rain to go elsewhere. Reading a funny book about the challenges of suburban gardening. Children, neighbors and not-so-wild life. Look on the bright side, Carrie. If you have armadillos digging up your yard, you probably don’t have skunks. I’ll write the “I Hate Ants” song down for you. Maybe, you can set it to music. Lol. k*
katiebear
mulege
Mexico

August 11, 2012
11:53 AM

Post #9237902

I'm scheduled for surgery on Tuesday. IF IF IF. My friend Steve who said I can stay by his house had a mild heart attack. I don't know if he will be able to take me to and from the surgery. Also, I'm having some car/foinancial problems. I sent Steve an email a while agao and told him what's going on. Worst case scenario is that surgery will have to be rescheduled either for later this month if they have an opening or for the fall sometime. I commited the Worst Kaiser Sin - I totally spaced out on an apopointment with the surgeon. He may never forgive me. I had such a great orthopedic surgeon for my hand surgeries I'd forgotten about the more common surgeon's ego. Oh, well. if it all works out he'll do a good job on my knee and I'll havve a rapid recovery.

I might not be online for a few days but will keep you posted as I'm able. Meanwhile, I'm haning on and in.

hugs, katie

BirdieBlue

BirdieBlue
Winston Salem, NC
(Zone 7a)

August 11, 2012
12:53 PM

Post #9237957

Katie, you are and will continue to me in my prayers for a smooth surgery and quick rehab and recovery. Mine is coming soom...month or 2 maybe.

Sheri
katiebear
mulege
Mexico

August 11, 2012
4:47 PM

Post #9238234

Thank you, Sheri. kb
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

August 13, 2012
3:13 AM

Post #9239647

Hi Sheri,
Am thinking about you Katie Bear.You're keeping your surgeon on his toes. Good for you.
Keep us up to date as you can.Our thoughts will be with you both.
Oh Kay, Me oh my! ETex has both skunks and armadillos. The GOOD news. They don't have bears. LOL BAD NEWS- They also have a few alligators.
Glad to have my tests behind me. Just have to wait for results. One nurse told me I may as well get use to the idea of using a breathing unit for sleep.If thats what i need for get up and go------So be it.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

August 16, 2012
2:22 PM

Post #9243839

Scared the heck out of me when I was mowing the lawn, I came too close to the web and it started shaking the web so i would see it. So i got my camera and took its picture we named it a Morse code spider lol (dots and dashed all over it)
In the second picture you can see the spinner on the back of it's belly.

Kay cant do any thing on the web rt now so I'm Amargia for now. (Jim)

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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 17, 2012
10:34 AM

Post #9244652

Hey, Jim! Nice to "see" you! I'm auditioning for The Dallas Symphony Chorus on Sunday! Yikes!!!! On the one hand, I am positive I won't get in. On the other hand I might get it, and it's worth a try, right? Maybe? And I can always blame the wheelchair if I don't get in.

Very sad about Kay and the www. I didn't have a phone for 2 days and I went CRAZY. I would jump out a window if I didn't have internet.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

August 17, 2012
11:51 PM

Post #9245335

Thats one mean looking spider! Hugs to Kay.
Hope all goes well Carrie. Do they know you are a composer also?
Could'nt do without my puter either.
I adopted a lil black kitten today.
She's one week old and only has one eye. I went to the animal shelter looking for a white cat to adopt. They were going to put her(the kitten) down. Could'nt help myself, She's adorable. Left the white cat there.

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 18, 2012
11:02 AM

Post #9245673

I don't KNOW anybody yet to know I'm a composer. If I knew a soul, I might mention to him or her. I think I am going to join a book group.

BirdieBlue

BirdieBlue
Winston Salem, NC
(Zone 7a)

August 20, 2012
10:38 AM

Post #9247714

Vickie, what a blessing for you to rescue that tiny black kitten. You two will deffinately bond tightly. My bottle babies have always meen my closestand sweetist velcro babies.
Sheri

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

August 21, 2012
8:56 AM

Post #9248855

Hi all have not been diligent Iv been in the dumps a bit my leg is acting up twitching and such.

Carrie I Hope all went well on your tryout Sunday. If they passed you over because of the w/c, it is there loss.

Vickie I will bet that cat will love you so dearly that you will be happy together. You did the best thing for it. now it has a caring soul to love.

Hi Sheri hope you and your fur babies are doing well.

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 21, 2012
9:46 AM

Post #9248915

They passed me over, I believe, because I was 25 years older than everyone else trying out AND because of the wheelchair AND because I am not taking lessons currently AND because I am a much too cerebral person--my brain works well but my body (including my voice) aren't up to the challenge. Ie my voice stinks, compared to people with REALLY good voices.

Vicki, how is your new kitten liking life chez-Vicki? Good call...black cats are the new "little black dress."

Hope you're feeling better, Jim. Went to the MD with DH this am; he's doing OK, but he needs better pain meds--Cymbalta isn't working for him. He got referred to a "spine center"...we'll see. Still trying to get my records coordinated at the MS center here!
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

August 21, 2012
10:49 PM

Post #9249657

Carrie, The loss is definately theirs.I am serious!
My black kitten is really known as a black tabby, I have learned from a cat lady. If she were a male,he'd be expensive as they are really rare. She went to group therapy with me yesterday. Tomorrow group is going to a museum and LongJohn Silvers. Jackie kitten can't go. DD is going to babysit.
Jim, Hope you get to feeling better.Being in the dumps is the worst. Think I'd rather be beat.

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 22, 2012
1:38 PM

Post #9250241

OMG now I have some kind of allergic reaction going on that nobody understands. Spent until 2 am yesterday night at the ER explaining (over and over) that we had just moved here, that I don't have a PCP yet, that I had a similar systemic allergic reaction to IV methylprednisilone in 1999, and FINALLY got an IM shot of decadron (dexametha-whatever, substitute for methylprednisilone, around 1:30 am. Grrrrr. The triage nurse said (at 8 pm) all I needed was a few Benadryl tabs (to Ray; not to my face). To my face she told me about her uncle with MS "who didn't do so good." Grrrrrrrr.

Those of you living with depression, it stinks! I'm so ANGRY that I'm depressed. Or I'm so depressed that I'm getting ANGRY. De Nile is not just a river in Africa.

Vicki, my last cat (before DD #2 became deathly allergic) was some sort of tabby -- dark brown -- looked almost kind of like part Maine Coon cat. I used to adore my cats, before kids. My DH is not a cat fan, and in the end, he was doing most of the care and feeding. We gave the cat to my mother. DD #2 is STILL deathly allergic, and she is way more allergic to dogs than to cats. (DD #1 traded 180 lbs of horrible boyfriend for two dogs. Definitely an improvement, but I'd like to see her with a humanoid.)

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

August 23, 2012
11:48 AM

Post #9251320

My doctor called yesterday to give me the results of some recent test. He wants to start me on testosterone shots., but wants to consult another doctor about dosage. It is normal for older men to have a drop in testosterone levels. But, if it gets too low it can cause serious problems. Doc says I will probably feel more energetic after starting the testosterone shots.
Kay is trying to memorize all the “hot keys” so she can navigate online without having to click in boxes or on symbols she can no longer see. She is frustrated she can’t learn new things as quickly as she once could.

As part of our goal to be debt free in two years, we are attempting to grow half of our food. It looks like we will be eating a lot of potatoes and kale. Making the effort will b3e interesting even if we fall short of our goal.
I’ve heard “purse dogs” are THE fashion accessory in California. But cats have too much dignity for that..unless you make it worth their while. Cats are independent souls, but they can be bribed. Jackie, the pirate cat, could be a unique fashion accessory.
Carrie, you might want to check out the book club meetings at the major chain stores like B-A-M, Walden’s or Barnes & Noble. Every one I’ve ever been in is w/c accessible and most have bulletin boards near the front of the stores telling when different book club meetings are. I like independent book stores better, but they aren’t all w/c accessible.
WoW butterflies sure love my zinnias got a good shot of one in flt. (Jim)

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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 23, 2012
3:56 PM

Post #9251556

Jim, I've read about older men having a drop in testosterone levels. Never met one who would admit it--bravo to you! I guess it's a balance between the nuisance of the shots vs. the added vim and vigor the testosterone gives you. How often, could you administer them yourself, or do you have to commute to the MD all the time? Several MS meds are administered through self-injection, from daily to weekly.

The @#%$!&*%#@ MD at the ER Tues. night wrote me a scrip for a dosage they no longer make! Spent all day yesterday getting that straightened out, went all the way up to driving to walgreens last night, talking to the pharmacist, taking the physical piece of paper back to the hospital, getting a new scrip which was written for the ONE DRUG I KNOW FOR SURE I AM ALLERGIC TOO! Yeeesh. Got that Re-Re written (for a steroid I am not yet allergic to). I am certainly on a steroid trip, folks, please excuse the caps and screaming and raging! It's not me. It's this stupid fiendish medication. But I am also extremely mad at the stupid ER trip. Grrrrrrr.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

August 24, 2012
9:51 AM

Post #9252208

I'll Say Carrie one bad experience there. Very poor doctor to not keep up on a discontinued medications. My BIL, a pharmacist, thinks Druggists should do all the prescribing and doctors just diagnose he says there is no way doctors can stay current on the fast changing medications out there.

As far as the shots, they will administer them. Not sure of the frequency as yet. But not having bigger breasts than some women would be nice. Plus the fact that the pain will go away. hopefully no more surgery to remove the lumps in my chest. They hurt!

Is there an organized group of people With MS in D/FW area. If not maybe Debra and you should start one, gather troops to battle bad Doc's lol (Jim)

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BirdieBlue

BirdieBlue
Winston Salem, NC
(Zone 7a)

August 24, 2012
5:13 PM

Post #9252610

Jim,
those lilies are exquisite. What are they. Don't believe I've e ver seen these b4!

Birdie

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 24, 2012
6:21 PM

Post #9252686

Yes, Sheri, flowers and plants!!! I wish I were not on these stupid drugs so I could think about something besides my own self for a minute. Jim, I think your BIL is quite right. Walgreens has saved me twice in a month now from bad prescriptions!!! Plus, your testesterone shot also sounds like it may help...all the best good thoughts going your way. I was not bright enough to put that together with the surgery you had before, but it makes sense.

I've been trying to calm myself down with soothing music and heavy meals--you know what I mean, the kind that make you need a nap--but I'm still pretty wired.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUfi0ts_D-0
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

August 24, 2012
7:45 PM

Post #9252772

So very sorry,Carrie.
I love soothing music.
Hey! Hey! I'm more than willing to help clean up the American Health Care system. It's really bad when WHO rates it#39 in the Industrial world.
You might like to try an herbal tea. They're mild.
Hugs Jim.
My kitten did not make it.Of course i cried. She will always be special to me.
The pink zennia is awesome,a beautiful shade of pink.
Not much more to say
Vickie

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 26, 2012
7:49 PM

Post #9254849

Oh, Vickie! So sad for you today. Hugs and gentle arms. The text (to the music above) is from a Requiem mass, it's the part where the angels come down to take your soul to paradise to live with angels for eternity. Hope you feel as sad as you need to only for as long as you need to and then maybe go get your white cat? Poor Vickie.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

August 27, 2012
3:04 PM

Post #9255980

Ah-h-h, that’s sad, Vickie. Kittens have a perilous existence the first few months. We bought a cute little silver and black tiger-striped from the pet store. She was sickly from the start and died within the month. I’ll never get another kitten from the pet shop.

That is Lycoris radiata , Sheri. There are so many flowers with the common name spider flowers. I have to admit it looks more spidery than Lycoris squamigera which is what I always called spider flower. We’ve settled on calling L. radiata “spider flower” and L. squamigera “surprise lily. .We are agreed unless a true lily known as “spider lily” shows up. lol.

We are prepping for Tropical Storm Isaac. It is expected to be Hurricane Isaac by this evening. It looks like it is going to make landfall along the Mississippi coastline at the moment. Isaac is a big guy. We will be catching the feeder bands. More heavy rains and we are already saturated. Flooding is our concern, not the winds. Hope it brings some rain to Texas and Arkansas.

The Culligan man came a few days ago so we have a good supply of drinking wanter. Checked the generator this morning. Plenty of groceries so we are ready. Kay is out doing what can be done to lessen erosion damage. We have had an unusually wet August.

It has been cool enough the tomatoes have started producing again. Beans and peas are in the ground. Still isn’t cool enough to start the fall and winter crops. Another two weeks, probably.

Not sure of this ones name is it popped up on Sunday got it's picture. Hope and Prayers for all who may get hit with the Hurricane. (JIM)

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katiebear
mulege
Mexico

August 28, 2012
1:29 PM

Post #9257252

Hi Everyone, Just stopping in quickly to let you know my surgery went well. Everyone is impressed. Had the staples removed today. I'm still groggy from anesthetics and having to work the muscles but I'm doing fine. Back soon. hugs, katie

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 28, 2012
1:37 PM

Post #9257274

Hip, hip, hooray, Katie! (Or knee, knee, hooray?) That's good news. I remember having staples and being so surprised that they weren't stitches. Thanks for stopping by.

BirdieBlue

BirdieBlue
Winston Salem, NC
(Zone 7a)

August 29, 2012
8:14 AM

Post #9258092

I chickened out again and caned the preeop MD appt again..
I am so happy that you are doing so well.

Sheri

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 29, 2012
10:45 AM

Post #9258295

Sheri, joint replacement surgery is a BIG decision, actually any elective surgery is a HUGE decision. I think it's wise to wait until you are sure you are ready.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

August 29, 2012
1:24 PM

Post #9258434

Glad it all went well and great to hear from you Kb.
I was reminded. Debra had identified the above in a past year they are Oxblood lily or school house lily or more appropriately red hurricane lilies.
I did not think it would do so much damage being a cat 1 but the size really hurt too massive it moved a lot of water.
Carrie are the feeder bands reaching you with rain.
I can understand how you feel Sheri I keep putting off my back surgery. (Jim)



carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

August 29, 2012
2:46 PM

Post #9258534

If that's about the weather, Jim, it seems to rain every few days here, but I am definitely cut off from the weather much more than I ever was before. I stay in my air-conditioned house and when the visiting nurses come, I ask them how it is "out there."

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

August 31, 2012
7:23 PM

Post #9261048

I gathered a gallon of muscadine grapes yesterday. I should be able to pick another gallon tomorrow. What ticks me off is they came from a wild vine and his vine produced better than the pampered ones in my yard and the hybrids I purchased. I will try to take a cutting from the wild vine I'm harvesting and save some seeds from it. Nature is thumbing her nose at me!
If it is anything like it is here, Carrie, you will want to hug your AC another 3 weeks or so. Only mad dogs, Englishmen and Kay willingly go out in this heat. I'm betting you will like autumn in the south.
This is as close as I gotten to gardening lately. It is my mini Zen garden. I make my own bamboo rakes.

Vickie, does anything in this picture look familiar. (Jim)

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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 1, 2012
6:00 PM

Post #9261876

We drove up to visit my DD at UNT today--joking to ourselves that there should be a thunderstorm where the 103* and the 105* fronts meet in the middle of town! (Two different thermostats...) I thought the really hot days were over, but I guess not. DH jokes that instead of going to First Parish once a week, we go to First Cash Pawn and buy used DVDs once a week. I'm not crazy enough to go out in this heat, though.

I like your zen garden, Jim, very soothing!

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

September 2, 2012
6:40 PM

Post #9262831

When the kids are around, little plastic dinosaurs and My Little Pony figurines find their way into my Zen Garden so I’ve started creating mini landscapes fit for dinosaurs and magical ponies. It has been an unusually wet summer that has given me plenty of “grass” (moss) for these mini landscapes.
My Zen Garden has led to unraveling yet another southernism when I heard creating a design in my Zen Garden referred to as “Jim is piddlin’ in his little sandbox.” Between this and an article in Southern Living about the fine art of piddlin’, I now have a clearer idea of what is meant when a southerner says “Oh, I’ve just been piddlin’ around.”
How is your new crochet project going, Vickie? Have you ever done a big crochet project like a bedcover or afgan? My neighbor in Panama City made them and gave them to the fire department. They sold her work for funding or gave them to people who had lost everything in house fires. Looked like a lot of work to me. Sure can’t be classified as “piddlin’ around.” Piddlin’, I learned, can’t be anything useful. It goes like this: Doing laundry is work, but arranging your socks according to color and type is piddlin’, Another southern linguistic mystery solved. I’m another step closer to being a proper southern gentlemen. (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 3, 2012
5:29 PM

Post #9263816

Jim, I got halfway done with a crochet blanket several husbands ago, when I didn't want to actually make a slipcover but just make a throw to cover the ugliness of a sofa. It was the sofa on which I spent a month on my back, when I was wrongly diagnosed with a slipped disc, before someone else made the correct diagnosis of MS. I remember the sofa--and the crochet project--well. If I had started off with a smaller first row, it would have been finished for sure!

I had a ...brain freeze... the Harrison Ford character from star wars living in a pot with a 'Guacamole' Hosta that was sent to me by a DG friend who has now passed on. RIP, old friend. Isn't it funny how you can start by talking about My Little Pony and I wind up thinking of my departed friend whom I met years ago on this forum? Vickie, what is your new crochet project? Did anyone else get a scarf from Steph (scraps)?
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

September 4, 2012
12:41 AM

Post #9264198

I got towels from Step.

Have made a couple bedspreads for DD,s and numurous afghans for other family members. Right now am working on an afghan for grandsons girlfriend. At least i can do something useful when i can only sit around.
My fuzzy white kitten has a reddish tail and has finally received the name Foxy.
Carrie it is funny how the mind can conjure up memories of old friends and times. But for me, it is usually a good thing.
katiebear
mulege
Mexico

September 5, 2012
1:03 PM

Post #9266004

Three weeks since my surgery. I'm still pushing the physical therapy - stretching and bending and icing. I'm grumpy so I think I'm getting better. I've made vegetable flowers (onions, radishes and peppers) and soaked them in ice water overnight. I'm going to go to the hospital where I had the surgery and give them a couple of "bouquets." I think if I'm enough better to be grumpy I'm enough better to start giving back.

Must see doctor before I can go home. Knee class tomorrow morning.

hugs, katie

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 5, 2012
3:14 PM

Post #9266127

Grumpy is an excellent sign. it means you are alert and interacting with the environment (instead of just zoning out on pain meds) and thinking and using your brain. Always good to keep that part active and stretched! Can you take a picture of your vegetable flowers? I'm not visualizing the pepper...onion and radish, yes,but not the pepper.

I tried to talk to the social worker they hooked me up with about volunteering and giving back. I mentioned possibly teaching English as a Second Language and got a diatribe about how "they will never learn English!" (In which "they" are people who didn't grow up speaking English...) Yeesh, mind will only fully function when open. I mean some people learn English and are totally bilingual and some people never learn English, some people don't care whether they learn English and some people work very hard to master grammar and idioms and spelling and pronunciation.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

September 6, 2012
12:45 AM

Post #9266627

Katie, Grumpy is good!!! LOL
I'd love to see your veggie flowers too.
ALAS I'm one of those who never learned proper English. But I sure do have fun with people sometimes.My southern drawl can get thicker than ticks on a dogs hindleg.
That poor dear ignorant social worker should take a trip to Europe.Where 3 languages are common. But then Social workers are not far up the educational ladder.Are they? poor dears!
Espanics can speak excellent English and yes they even manage to go to American collages.
My rant is over!!!!
I took my new kitten,Foxy to the vets today. She quit eating and got lethargic. They kept her. The vet told me she was 6 weeks not 8 weeks.I'm praying hard for her.But I know she is in good hands.
Vickie
evie_beevie
Essex Junction, VT
(Zone 4a)

September 6, 2012
10:51 AM

Post #9267076

New here. I have a bad back (since age 13, now 39) and am finally coming to terms with my new normal - not being able to do much physically. I also have chronic depression (dysthymia). Gardening was my outlet for my depression and I just can't do what I used to do anymore. So I have some questions for you all.

How did you come to terms with your physical limitations? I imagine it is mostly time and reframing the issue (focusing on what you CAN do), but that is unsatisfying in the beginning! Coming from the spine specialist today I cried knowing that all the landscaping I've done is a thing of the past (used to pull up the grass - yeah, hindsight says that was a bad idea! stupid hindsight). I realize I need to mourn.

For those specifically with a bad back:

Do you use any tools that help get certain things done? For example, I found this recently, which could help cleanup when I weed http://www.amazon.com/Radius-Garden-500C-Gator-Grabber/dp/B0042F8E9I/

Are there any techniques you've found that helped limit the pain? I know I need to remember to put on my corset before I try to do anything (I always forget). I also know to not do one thing for a while - to mix it up.

Thanks for any advice/tips!

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 6, 2012
3:50 PM

Post #9267318

Welcome, evie_beevie!

We are a strange little bunch, sometimes we sit around and commiserate and other times we brainstorm. My husband has a terrible, awful back--he broke it 5 years ago--but he won't admit that he needs anything different. In MA we had a self-propelled (is that what I mean?) lawnmower so he didn't have to drag it around on the hilly parts of our yard. Here in Texas he bought a push mower! The last time he lived in Texas he was 18 and 180 lbs and in the Air Force and running 5 miles a day. I think he thought somehow he would magically be restored to that 18 year old body when we got here. No such luck. Now I'm wondering if I should get him one of those things you linked to.

Our back expert, and really, our adaptive stuff expert, is Jim, who I'm sure will pop in sooner or later.

You do have to mourn, and scream, and cry, and all those Elizabeth Kubler-Ross stages. The thing that makes chronic illness so difficult is it's chronic. I mean a broken leg gets better, cancer you die or something dramatic but chronic illness you just linger. After the initial OMG! everyone forgets about it and you're left to cope.

Limiting pain...have you tried Physical Therapy? I was just talking to my PT today about how when it hurts, you try not to move, and when you don't move you get stiff which hurts. I am sure (I am omniscient; of course I know) DH would benefit from PT or yoga or stretching but he says it all hurts too much. But every year he gets more hunched up.

Vickie, she is an MSW, which means she should at least have a Master's degree. They used to require two semesters of a second language in college, but you can squeak by with "Spanish for helping professions" or something, which is for helping poor stupid immigrants who refuse to learn English. (I'm taking her side to illustrate who's REALLY stupid in this situation.) I doubt she's ever been out of Texas.

I don't know how you can tell how old a kitten is, but isn't someone usually around when they are born or very new? That's a strange mistake, and kind of a serious one, too. Once I got a kitten and we specifically wanted a male. 6 weeks later we took him to get neutered, and found out it was a female! Big difference!! I'm glad Foxy is at the vet where she will be safe and cared for.
evie_beevie
Essex Junction, VT
(Zone 4a)

September 6, 2012
4:00 PM

Post #9267330

Thanks, Carrie. PT hasn't been much help. However, I just finished a little stint with aquatic therapy and am now keeping it up on my own (literally this week). I highly recommend it to your DH - it is the first time exercising doesn't hurt (they are small exercises that you can build on so it isn't a lot at once, it hurt a bit at first but quickly got better esp as therapist tweaked the exercises).

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 6, 2012
4:12 PM

Post #9267343

He has trouble swimming because you have to arch your back ? Not exactly sure about that, but I know pre-injury he used to enjoy swimming and now it hurts too (like everything else). But he is not likely to be willing to try something because someone on DG suggested it, lol. Have to get an MD to order him to do it. He has just been referred to a spine clinic out here. (Of course now it's my job to make the appointment!) I'm sorry PT wasn't helpful. Maybe it depends a little on the individual therapist, because I've had horrible ones and wonderful ones.

You're Eve, right? We have a real names thread around here somewhere...

http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/1103477/
evie_beevie
Essex Junction, VT
(Zone 4a)

September 6, 2012
4:50 PM

Post #9267371

Yep, that's me.

There's no swimming in aquatic therapy. Basically, walk forwards in water for 5min, backwards for 5, side-step for 5. Then some standing exercises where you keep your posture but move your legs and/or arms. No bending, arching, etc. Example: http://www.hughston.com/hha/a_14_3_6.htm Then some floating exercises which really help the core because you have to keep your balance while moving your legs. Again, no bending, arching, etc. More info: http://www.hiphelp.com/pages/exercises.html

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

September 6, 2012
7:45 PM

Post #9267570

Jim popping in. ;) Welcome to the forum .
Raised beds and long handled tools are what keep me gardening. I read a book a few months ago written by an elderly woman who had gorgeous landscaping and didn’t want to give it up. I’m having a Tramadol moment and can’t remember the title and author at the moment. I’ll put it on my next post. Nadine forgot to put our book list in the thread intro. I’ll correct that. I found an excellent container gardening book to add to the list.
I just sort of exercise in the water. It is nowhere near as painful as regular PT. If you have access to a heated pool it is great. Unless it is high summer, an unheated pool, even an indoor one, doesn’t have the same effect.
Love those long grabbing tools. I can hook the wagon up behind my riding mower and when I come across a pine cone or small branch on the ground. I can pick it up with my grabber and toss it in the wagon.
Do you still have the black cat that has been with you so long? Hope Foxy does well. Then you can have salt and pepper cats.
Planted purple-top turnips and carrots today. Spied a canna in the CanDo Container Garden I’m going to plantnap for my Old Soldiers Garden. It is called ‘The President’, I think. It has a very large, cardinal red flower. (I have Kay’s permission. The CanDo Garden is supposed to be all pastels.)
Kay’s rearranged the front garden so I can see the bird bath, seed feeder and the hummingbird feeder out the kitchen window. (I removed the lower cabinets from in front of the window so I can sit in front of the window on bad days when I’m using the w/c. ) It was worth the effort. I got to watch the antics of four hummers, a summer tanager and more butterflies than I could count. Love this time of year! . (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 7, 2012
4:19 PM

Post #9268345

Eve, I will convey your info to DH. I still doubt he'll do it...maybe I can tell him he needs to bring ME to aqua therapy! It is supposed to be good for MS. I've always stayed away from swimming in New England because the water is too cold for me. Swimming pools around here are more like the temperature of soup, I've heard. On the other hand, now that school is in session, I don't know if our local pool is open. When it is103-115 out, going to na nice warm pool is not really safe for MS.

Jim, that is exactly what you need to do to make the kitchen and bathroom truly wheelchair accessible! Welcome to my world, I'll just move over...there's plenty of space. If you do the whole 9 yards (more like 90 yards), you need a shallow sink and insulated pipe and no under-the-sink cabinets in kitchen or bathroom. Or above cabinets either, unless you don't mind that you can't reach them.

Vickie, I have the phone number of the agency that sent this lovely Social Worker, but I am afraid to call! I hope the nurse (who is great) is calling. DH scared me by saying "don't say she's racist; everybody's that way in Texas. Don't say she doesn't take your ideas seriously; she can twist that around and say it was a therapeutic tool to see if you really meant it. Don't say this, she'll say that. Say that she talks about her husband's bad back too much and asks you about door measurements." I know he's probably used to documenting everything at work or in the AF, and knows how big government agencies work as well as anybody. I know he's trying to be helpful. But my natural scaredy-cat tendency combined with his warning me against every possible error I could make has got me incapable of making a simple phone call. I'm pretty sure someone else, like maybe the nurse, copied down the information on this brochure. (I asked him to call for me and he said no, no, no, if I call that will set off all the warning bells that I am too controlling and you're not competent to handle your own affairs and need a court-appointed guardian or something!)

So I've been staring at this idiotic brochure all day.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

September 8, 2012
2:13 AM

Post #9268672

Oh Carrie, Your DH may be right. Wonder if you could say you two just clash personally and can't seem to come to terms.(No fault -no blame) Whatever happens,hope you can work it out.That sucks. CARRIE YOU ARE NOT AFRAID OF NOTHING!!!!!(OR ANYTHING) Good luck.
Welcome Evie, I have chronic Depression too.Seems to be worse lately So I try to stay busy at things I usually injoy. I can't handle a regular garden anymore. CHF and bad knees. But I have 40 or 50 large container pots and have Daylillys and annuals. I can sit in a chair and garden in the dirt to my hearts content.(I bought my pots a few at a time when they were on sale,about this time of year.)
I've taken water exercises before. It's fun and not strenous. I could take some now but am too lazy to drive 30 miles everyother day. One of the colleges might offer classes for local folk. Ours does. Think ours is $50 a year.
Jim, Am so glad you can keep an eye on the local wildlife. Yes,I've still got my mean ole black cat,Miss Kitty.(Love her to death) She is much too good to have anything to do with any other cat. Also have 2 grey cats They are outside cats. In my old age I wanted a lap toy. LOL Also have Cricket dog and Dillen. So I never want for love.
Foxy is doing good. My vet said she is younger than I was told (about4 weeks old.) So she's getting kitten formula and she was sick so also getting anti-biotics. The vet said our humane society was a sorry bunch,and most of their animals were sick.Foxy spends most of her time in my arms. Which means I don't get much work done. She gets fed every 3 hours.
Had the use of a breathing machine at the hospital last night while DD babysat.Guess I'll be getting one.
The mask did'nt bother me near as much as I thought it would. Got to go to Hobby Lobby. Was in Seventh Heaven. Found a string of lighted angels for the Christmas tree and some fall leaves window clings.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

September 8, 2012
5:30 PM

Post #9269320

Carrie, I’ve been spending a lot of time on the phone with my eldest SD. She is a Texas native. We were talking about the problems of being a liberal in Texas. She uses what she calls her Texas Sweet Briar approach when dealing with people like your PA. She explains the TSB approach as keeping one’s voice rose sweet, but not removing the barbs of truth in what you say. She says her response to a remark like your PA made would be some3thing like: “Yeah, that is true. I guess the poorer Mexican Americans are to tired from building and cleaning our houses to have much time for learning the language. There seems to be a version of the Texas Sweet Briar approach throughout the south. It is effective. My problem is I never think of the right thing to say at the right time. Ten minutes after the fact, I always know what I should have said.
Thanks for the link,, Evie. I need a more organized approach to my aquatic work –outs. The title and author of the book I was thinking of is: Gardening for a Lifetime by Sydney Eddison. During the high summer lol, I do more reading about gardening than actual gardening.
.
Planted carrots in a large, raised planter. Carrots are so slow to germinate I’m trying some new techniques. 1/3 of the planter was planted as usual, another ½ after soaking the seeds. And, the last third was planted using the paper towel seed tape method. We’ll see which works best.
Kay’s eldest is seriously ill and coming to live with us. We’ve been busy moving things around to make room for 4 adults, two big dogs and a preposed cat. Nadine insist Tara, would gain much therapeutic benefit from caring for her own pet. Uh-huh. I’m sure Nadine is being purely altruistic and her recommendation has nothing to do with the fact she has been bugging us to get a new cat for years

Here is the book list ill include it in the intro next time.

we decided to keep an updated list of websites and books on different aspects of accessible gardening in the introduction of this thread. Feel free to add or give your opinion of the sites/books listed
WEBSITES: Please let us know about any sites you have found especially helpful or if you found links invalid.
Thrive
http://www.carryongardening.org.uk/
-This site addresses gardening with various types of challenges. This website is based in the U.K... Some gardening vocabulary might be unfamiliar to U.S. gardeners. This is not a major issue, however. Highly recommended
-AgrAbility
http://fyi.uwex.edu/agrability/about/
AgrAbility is a program for disabled farmers and ranchers. The focus is on agriculture rather than horticulture. The link is to AgrAbility “About Us” page. If you need info such as how to get from a wheelchair into a pick-up truck, this is the place to go.

-Gardening from a wheelchair
http://www.mda.org/publications/quest/q31garden.html

BOOKS—All, except one. of these books are available in audio format from the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. The exception is “Garden Unseen” which is only available in Braille at the time of this post. This list was compiled by a visually impaired person; there may be print books available that are not on the list. Please correct the oversight, if you know of any. The books in this list are, of course, also available in print and may be at your local library.
-Garden Unseen by L. Stevens
-Accessible Gardening for People with Physical Disabilities by Janeen R. Adil (We especially liked the list of recommended vegetables for containers and raised beds found in this book.)
-The Enabling Garden: A Guide to Lifelong Gardening by Gene Rothert--Written by a horticultural therapist employed at the Chicago Botanic Garden. It should be kept in mind that this book was written 17 years ago. Some of the information on raised bed building materials is outdated, but it is still worth reading since the author gardens from a wheelchair. He possesses both academic and first-hand knowledge.
-Gardening Through Your Golden Years by James W. Wilson
-Accessible Gardening: Tips & Techniques for Seniors by Joann Woy
Very comprehensive. No matter what problems advancing age is throwing at you to spoil your gardening fun, you should find a way to keep gardening in this book. Mobility limitations, visual impairment and more subtle issues such as balance are all addressed. Will possibly be updated later this year. .
--The Able Gardener: Overcoming Barriers of Age and Physical Limitations by Kathleen Yeoman
A good book for those new to gardening and those who garden on the west coast. Some information may be outdated, but much garden knowledge stands the test of time well.

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 10, 2012
4:13 PM

Post #9271261

Golly, Jim, I have not read a single one of those books, and I am the writers group expert on "gardening from a wheelchair." What a terrific list--thanks, Armagia!

Love your Texas Sweet Briar approach. Sounds similar to "what an ugly shirt you're wearing--it adds 10 lbs to your face, easily, bless your heart." In other words (that wasn't a great example, but then, I don't get much chance to practice) you can say any insulting thing you want to anybody, as long as you add "bless your heart" at the end. (Or "God love her" or some other similar tag line at the end.) My kids say "I'm not saying this to be mean, but... " and then say the most horrible mean things in the world. Yes, in fact, you ARE saying it to be mean, and if you didn't want to be mean, you wouldn't say anything.
evie_beevie
Essex Junction, VT
(Zone 4a)

September 10, 2012
4:19 PM

Post #9271269

Thanks for the book title; I've added it to my wishlist.

Luckily I started my landscaping with the goal of it being low-maintenance (lots of shrubs, native-ish plants, etc), so I'm not in too bad a shape. But as you know, it is never finished! :D I'm going to try planting some bulbs this week because I hate how this one perennial bed looks in early spring (in Z4 that means there's a whole lotta nothing going on until mid-May or so!).

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 10, 2012
4:26 PM

Post #9271278

Bulbs are good, lots of work now but lots of results later. Plus you can stagger perennials to cover ripening bulb foliage without too much trouble. My DH used to HATE waiting for the foliage before he could mow in the spring.

http://davesgarden.com/guides/articles/view/2451/
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

September 12, 2012
2:45 AM

Post #9272790

Evie, LOL You've caught that dreaded disease called Gardening addiction. You'll never be the same.But gee will you have fun.
Vickie

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

September 12, 2012
7:34 AM

Post #9272975

I would like to add some more hyacinth bulbs myself. Rural VT has such natural beauty, a naturalized, semi-native landscape sounds very doable. I always loved the birches. River birch is the only one that is possibly hardy here. My SIL lives in St. Johnsbury. She finds the timing of my visits suspicious. I confess. I’m a leaf peeper. We don’t get much autumn color from the trees here, but we are compensated by having things still in bloom on Thanksgiving day. Do you get much autumn leaf color in the mountains, Vickie?
Every year I say I will preserve some of the muscadine and scuppernong grapes, but once again we ate them all fresh. Maybe when all the vines are producing We’ll have enough to make jelly or something.
It has been ginger time the last few days. We had ginger bread for breakfast this morning and ginger beer yesterday. I cut off a few growing tips to have ginger growing inside this winter.
Moved my bottle palm inside yesterday. Bottle or ponytail palms are tough as nails in most respects, but can’t tolerate much cold. Woke up to morning temps in the high 60;s. What a blessed relief. (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 12, 2012
9:20 AM

Post #9273055

Oh, reminds me, I'd better tell my DD in Boston to bring the houseplants inside for the winter soon.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

September 15, 2012
3:02 AM

Post #9275713


We usually have great colors in the fall. We may not have the brightest colors this year because of drought.But we'll still have a lot of visitors. The mountains give a chance for good vistas. Than the leaves will fall and everything will be drab till spring. Except inside my house. I'll have both artificial and real flowers in all rooms. Winter is not my favorite time of year. Flower catalogs will be my lifeline to sanity.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

September 19, 2012
3:50 AM

Post #9279666

Where is everyone?
It rained here and than rained again. everything seems to be trying to make a fresh start. There is real green stuff out there.
Still havent got my breathing stuff,mainly because i have'nt gone to get it. Will try to go the first.

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 19, 2012
9:19 AM

Post #9279975

I'm right here, Vickie. Not much happening. You need your breathing stuff.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

September 19, 2012
12:41 PM

Post #9280237

Glad to hear from you Carrie. I've done without it this long. It'll wait a couple of weeks. I got caught short of money this month. At least me and my pets have plenty to eat. I really miss my two that are no longer here.
I did find a check,I thought I'd already spent. Hurrah I can go to group this week.
The economy keeps going south. I may have to move north. I know everyone is feeling the pinch now days. I'm trying to crochet everyday to keep a step ahead of depression. My knees don't want to co operate in going for walks and i do love to be outside in the fall. So do mosquitoes!
Has anyone heard from Jim,Kay and Nadene?
I've got some windows to wash so had better go.
Vickie

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 19, 2012
2:14 PM

Post #9280312

Not I. Maybe their service is down?

So you did mean 10/1! Are you sure that's wise? I don't have asthma or anything, so my daughters say "mommy, I can't breathe, I need my stuff, it's gonna cost ___" or more likely, "can I have the credit card?" I'm so scared I just pay.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

September 22, 2012
3:38 AM

Post #9282775

Carrie, I sleep sitting up in a recliner. So no problems. I prefer my recliner so will stay there. I don't have any problems awake, just in my sleep.
My girls don't want credit card, Just cash.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

September 24, 2012
9:08 AM

Post #9284872

Whew! I finally have some free time to write.

Have you gotten outside to enjoy the cooler weather, Carrie? Do you have an accessible patio or something like it there?

Kay has been having more than her share of challenges lately. I recently rushed her to the ER thinking she was having an attack of appendicitis. It turned out to be an inflamed muscle. The doctor gave her an anti-inflammatory and Flexeril. I’m jealous of the latter. That is a muscle relaxer that truly works, but it is only for acute conditions. None of the muscle relaxers doctors will prescribe for chronic conditions like DDD work very well for me any longer. .

We are finally set up for another person living here. (Moving things around is probably how Kay injured her back.) If SD#1 changes her mind about living here, there is no way we are going to move it back to the way it was.

Vickie, you must be far from the only one who finds it easier to sleep in a recliner. While I was at the furniture store buying a new bed, I saw a recliner that was specially designed for just that. I think that is what I will buy when it is time for a new recliner. I tested out the feel of both the sleeper recliner and the one with the heat and massage. I preferred the sleeper.

I’m beginning to get this pottage garden concept. The celery among the Bull’s Blood beets looks totally cool. If it all taste as good as it looks, I’ll be 100% sold
I planted some ‘First Lady’ snapdragon seeds. I’m not sure about the timing of my planting. The seeds were on sale though and contained colors I don’t already have. The tomatoes have started flowering and producing again. It looks like I will have a good crop of banana peppers. I was surprised at how much shade the peppers tolerated. The leaves are far larger than the peppers grown in full sun, but they are producing as well as those grown in sun. The Japanese hardy oranges are larger than normal and maturing early. Kay flavored a pitcher of ice tea with the juice of two of them. It tasted good. They might have more than ornamental value after all. I hope their being a full two months early doesn’t indicate a colder than normal winter coming. My Owari mandarin orange tree is much more tender than the hardy ‘Flying Dragon.’ (Jim)
1&2) Not sure what we planted there but I love the powder puff balls and the blue/ purple color of the flowers

Thumbnail by Amargia   Thumbnail by Amargia         
Click an image for an enlarged view.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

September 24, 2012
9:11 AM

Post #9284877

Second picture loaded as the same try again silly JW. (Jim)

Thumbnail by Amargia
Click the image for an enlarged view.

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 24, 2012
4:02 PM

Post #9285285

I forget if "A" is warmer or cooler than "B" Jim, but you planted them in the ground? Hmm, maybe I should go out there (outside).

We were travelling most of last week. We had passes on USAirways but they stink compared to JetBlue. For some reason it made sense to go Las Vegas - Boston -DFW instead of Las Vegas - Phoenix - DFW, because via PHX there would have been a good chance of spending the night and if we have to spend the night, why not do it with our daughter in Boston? Ray had a work conference in Las Vegas and there's no way I can stay by myself any more. So I went along. The hotel was huge and everyone ate breakfast at McDonalds in the lobby, yuck.

The craziest thing was I get individually patted down on every single TSA line in every single airport, b/c I can't walk through the metal detector thing. That's been true for years, since before there was a TSA. But this time, before the checkpoint, I misplaced my reading glasses, and for some strange reason this time I didn't have an extra pair with me. And I brought a 2 inch thick book with me to read on the plane! So we bought another pair of reading glasses. And then at the checkpoint, they asked (as they always do) "do you have anything in your pockets?" I was wearing clingy knit pants and I stuck my hands in the empty pockets and wiggled my fingers and said "see? They're empty." (Or something along those lines.) Then the agent patted me down thoroughly, had me lean from side to side, felt along each leg, behind my butt, behind my back, around my waistband, all under the supervision and watchful eye of the woman who was training her. Then Ray collected me and I put my sweater, computer bag and purse back on and he pushed me along to the gate. Once we found the right gate, he transferred me from the wheelchair to one of the rows of chairs that were there. First a big PEN fell out of my pocket (the one I was sure was empty) and then we found my best READING GLASSES in their case behind me. Now the glasses were in a little nook, and I've lost them in that exact spot before, and they're only plastic anyway. But the pen? This was a big, jumbo, ballpoint pen, with the spring mechanism and everything. And she asked me if there was anything in my pocket and I put my hand in my pocket to take anything that was in there out, because I had no idea, so I searched the pocket and she searched me, but somehow I smuggled this highly dangerous pen through. Beware of pale women in wheelchairs when you're flying; they could have contraband pens!

Jim, I guess what I'm asking is, if I can get DH to take me out to the patio, is it not too late to plant seeds?

And thank goodness Kay only has a strained muscle and not appendicitis! Those things are irreplaceable! Hope she's feeling better, and can take it easier.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

September 24, 2012
10:02 PM

Post #9285627

Carrie, What kind of seeds? Its too late for most things, but turnip greens,mustard greens would probably make ok. I remember we planted our fall garden in August in ETEX.
Hugs to Kay! I got appendicitus between NY and Turkey. They opeated in the middle of the night. Thank Heavens for AirForce hospitals.

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 26, 2012
8:33 AM

Post #9286811

I don't know, cosmos, marigolds, zinnias, easy flowers. Spinach?

What were you doing between NY and Turkey? The country of Turkey? You exotic world traveler, you! I always forget that everyone hasn't always lived exactly where they are right now.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

September 28, 2012
6:01 PM

Post #9289350

Carrie, here is an easy garden project you should still have time for. It is a way to get celery early and easily . You can root celery you buy from the grocery store. Next time you buy a bunch of celery,, carefully remove the remains of the outer stalks. You should find a tiny stalk a couple of inches tall at the center of the bunch. (The height at which most cooks cut celery off leaves the tiny central stalk untouched.) Dampen the white bottom so rooting hormone will stick. Brush on the rooting hormone and plant in fertile soil. What will grow usually never reaches the size of the bunch you started with, but you can cut tender and delicious stalks off the growing plant as you need them in the kitchen. I would rank celery as the #1 hardest vegetable to grow so some foolproof “cheat celery” lessens the trauma of failures. This may be old news to you. but it was a new one to me. I’ve rooted grocery store carrots, avacadoes, Irish and sweet potatoes, but celery was a new one on me.

Vickie, can I send you a book to read? I think Jim Wilson’s Container Gardening is the best book I’ve come across on the subject. I think it has a place in our resource list, but you are our container growing expert. Most of our containers have a soil capacity of 20 gallons or more. I don’t think that counts as true container gardening. It falls somewhere between containers and earth boxes.

Had to tie up my banana pepper in semi-shade, but I will still grow peppers in similar conditions in future because it has been so productive. (Jim)

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cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

September 29, 2012
7:13 PM

Post #9290426

Jim, I'd love a book on container gardening. Arkansas Gardening usually has an article or two about containers. Want some more white rocks? ROFLO! Actually, Can't you grow things year round? Have been reading up on growing herbs inside(which I use to do outside)
I'm going to try growing the celery. Sweet potatoes make a beautiful vine. Carrots make a pretty fernlike folage. Pineapples make a pretty plant.
Carrie, That was'nt a fun trip. I was joining my DH in Ankara. We lived there for three years. I had my one year old daughter with me. There was'nt a thing I could do till I got her to my DH. They operated at night. Said I just made it. I loved living in Turkey. Muslems by the way are great people. Just like americans ----Some sweet, some sour.LOL

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 30, 2012
12:10 PM

Post #9291090

I loved my trip to Turkey too, although I spent all the time in Istanbul, hopping back and forth between Europe and Asia. That trip--probably based on an Agatha Christie book, I went jaunting around the middle east. I would have taken a tour or cruise but there wasn't one that went to the places I wanted to go. So I just went without a tour group to tell me how to act or where to eat or what to buy. Yikes! We stayed at a cheap hotel in Istanbul -- had a loudspeaker outside the window calling the faithful to pray 6 times a day, starting at 5 am. I don't remember if I had even heard of Islam then, but I certainly hadn't expected it to have an effect on my trip. It did. First of all, I didn't know about the praying part, or that they would actually do it. I didn't expect machine guns at the airport. I didn't know (really dumb) that you couldn't travel from Egypt to Israel and back. I was totally unprepared for the Orthodox Hassidim in Jerusalem. So naive!!!!

Anyway, that's a great celery idea, Jim! I love celery...not sure about DH.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 1, 2012
2:40 PM

Post #9292595

We usually take December off, but it is not too hard to garden 365 days a year here. The coldest it has been in winter since I’ve lived here is 18° as a nighttime low. I think it is the roller coaster of temperatures that does plants the most harm in our neck of the woods.. It isn’t unusual to go from shivering in a jacket and sweatshirt first thing in the morning to being comfortable in shorts and a t-shirt by late afternoon. People here do all sorts of things to keep their plants warmer at night. Kay literally puts her plants to bed at night by covering them with old blankets. The few extra degrees of warmth that provides is all most cool season veggies need. The pansies and ornamental Coles look after themselves. .
Vickie, do you still have any walking onions (Egyptian onions, top-setting onions) or did they all walk away?? We grow building onions and garlic,, Welsh onions and onion and garlic chives. Nadine wants to try growing pearl onions since I balked at their cost at the grocery store. I want a patch of walking inions to add to our growing collection and because I think they are cool looking. I was puzzled at first when Kay gave us a packet of parsley to grow with our onions and garlic. She said if we were actually planning to eat all the onions and garlic we would need it. Chewing parsley she told me is a natural way to freshen breath ;-)
Evie, I I’ve been doing a lot of reading on groundcovers and thought of you when I saw interesting ones that it is too hot for here. Have you tried using groundcovers to lessen the workload? We are operating on the “Nature abhors a vacuum” concept. Meaning, if you don’t put a plant you like in an empty space, Nature will put one there you probably won’t like. The trick seems to be finding the right groundcover for your area and for the specific site. One that is assertive, but not too aggressive or invasive. Using groundcovers can put a strain on the pocketbook if you have a lot of land, but it saves the back a lot of strain. We tried mulch to control weeds. The weeds laughed at weed control fabric covered by mulch. I think that technique must work better up north.
Nadine has been teased about her namesake hurricane today. She is renowned for her terrible sense of direction. A GPS system is a must for her. Hurricane Nadine seems to have the same problem. It has made some erratic direction changes as though it isn’t quite sure where it is going. Let’s hope it is as benign as our Nadine.
Carrie, I find it is the experiences that would never make it into a travel magazine that you remember. I had my fellow patrons at a bar in Germany rolling with laughter. Being PA Dutch, I was sure I could communicate with Germans. I gathered from their response my High German was the equivalent of someone walking into an American bar speaking in King James Biblical English. Understandable, but….
If you like pansies, Carrie, they are very affordable right now in big box and even Wal-Mart nurseries. They will go through to spring most years flowering off and on if you remember one thing. After a freezing night, water them first thing in the morning. Not sure why that works, but it does.

Does anyone have experience growing Russian comfrey? Kay says we need to take our compost quality up a notch if we are going to grow high demand vegetables organically. She claims composting comfrey and comfrey leaf tea is an affordable way to improve the soil. I’m afraid comfrey would be like a new version of kudzu or seacane. (Jim)
katiebear
mulege
Mexico

October 1, 2012
3:59 PM

Post #9292727

Richo at www.horizonherbs.com has a couple kinds of comphrey and has written a lot about the plants in their catalog. I think he is also pretty good about answering emails. kb
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

October 2, 2012
1:37 AM

Post #9293240

Jim, I've grown comfrey but it died out after several years. I was told it'd turn wild also but it did'nt. May start some more next spring. I liked the idea of it being a first aide plant. I liked growing clover as a cover crop.tho it's a cool weather crop. also bermuda grass,still have a couple of patches growing around.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 2, 2012
4:13 PM

Post #9293975

Much appreciated, Kb!!! I like the idea of growing some of our fertilizer, but, at one time, SOMEONE thought using seacane (wild cane, Arundo donax) to control erosion on a steep slope was a good idea. We are still cutting and digging it out! Arrrgh!

Vickie, I’ve noticed Bermuda grass is one of the grasses they are using in low mow blends for Florida. I dream of a small lawn of dwarf mondo with paths threading through it. I dream of it every time I have to work on the lawn mower or pay to have it fixed. . a dwarf mondo lawn is actually do-able in our area, just expensive. I went for a nice walk at the local botanical gardens. Sasquatch must have grabbed the chocolate basil and ran with it before we got to the herb garden. Kay took to much time sniffing all the roses. Next time I’m sneaking in and going directly to the herb garden. BTW, did you get your “breathing stuff”? I’ve heard breathing is kinda important. (Jim)

Photo #1: Kay says next year we should offer our neighbors some ‘Full Moon’ pumpkins for their decorating.

Photo #2: There were Halloween scarecrows and follies at the Dothan Botanical Garden, but I spotted something really scary! See her egg sack?

Photo #3: I can relate to this scarecrow!

Photo #4: Witch-in-a-Box

Photo #5: King Kong vs. the Crows.

This message was edited Oct 2, 2012 5:14 PM

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Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 5, 2012
4:41 PM

Post #9296908

I bought roots to start a comfrey patch. Added a small leaf tea camellia, another magnolia and some yucca to the landscape for winter interest. Kay is grumbling about my impulse buying when it comes to plants. I picked up some fox’s grape bellflowers and crocus ‘Goldilocks’ instead of the hyacinth. Now she has to figure out how to work those into the landscape.
I only found three things blooming on my walk that were not yellow. Blue mist flowers, a coral colored canna blossom and a mystery flower.
Photo #1 & #2: Goldenrods. Took this pic at great peril. The bees were all over it.
Photo #3: I believe this is common sneezeweed (Helen’s flower.)
Photo #4: Sunchoke blossom (Jerusalem artichoke)
Photo #5: The pretty not-yellow mystery flower.


This message was edited Oct 5, 2012 5:50 PM

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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

October 6, 2012
2:16 PM

Post #9297647

Jim, I think your pink mystery flower is Cosmos bipinnatus. I'm working on an article about them, incidentally. It reseeds, so you could have planted it whenever, and it is one of those "wildflowers" that was from Mexico so may be native to southern Texas or Florida anyway.
http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/28/

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 8, 2012
6:20 PM

Post #9300060

“ Way cool!” as Nadine would say. Thanks, Carrie. I thought all the cosmos had already bloomed. I will definitely re-seed this one. Looking forward to the article.

The ‘Endless Summer’ hydrangea is blooming today casting a vote for pink, but Stella d’Oro bloomed so yellow is still winning. Kay and I worked together clearing out the entrance bed for cool season plants.

The doctor called to reschedule my afternoon appointment at the last minute. Since we were already dressed and ready to leave, I just decided to spend the afternoon driving the back roads and sniffing roses with my wife. (Jim)

#1: ‘Gold Medal’ rose is a good modern rose for the south.

#2: I think this one is ‘Bridal Shower’. Definitely, bridal something.

#3: Can’t recall this one’s name, but it was a beauty.

#4: There has to be a beast with all the beauties. The Swamp Thing.

#5: The Stella d-Oro.




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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

October 10, 2012
2:04 PM

Post #9301704

#3 is more orange than yellow, which tips the vote in the pink direction, as far as I'm concerned. Yes, though, truly lovely.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

October 11, 2012
1:02 AM

Post #9302121

Beautiful pictures. Could#3 Possibly be called Tropical Dawn?
You sure thats not a picture of Bigfoot on a diet?
Half of my house lost electricity for some unknown reason. Just got everything back on. The TV was on the workable circuit but computer was not. Ran out of propane at the
same time. The first night was an adventure the second was not.I could survive without modern convenience but I'd be an unhappy camper.LOL
Kays a lucky wife,You are a romantic. Course you're lucky to have Kay also.
Have brought my ferns,geraniums and begonias in. We had a light frost but everything is still green.
The trees are just getting a touch of color. Nearly all the dogwoods are dead. So sad.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 12, 2012
5:02 PM

Post #9303479

Okay, I stand corrected. That daylily isn’t Stella d’Oro despite what the tag says.

I’m still enough of a Yankee to get an illicit thrill out of roses in autumn. It feels like I’m getting something over on Mother Nature. I’m not sure how romantic Kay thought our outing was. My w/c isn’t motorized. She had to push me up a steep incline, but I know I’m loved because she didn’t let go on the downside of the path that ended in stairs down to a pond.

Maybe, Swamp Thing is one of Sasquatch’s offspring. I suspect they have the Chocolate Basil hidden among the elephant ears in the greenhouse. It was to warm in there for me to say long. Kay is trying once asian to keep a sample of each plant in her basil collection inside for the winter. That has never worked before, but she still tries. This year it is light reflectors made of cardboard covered with aluminum foil to increase the light intensity.. It is amazing what basil addicts will go through for a fresh supply. (Jim)

Photo #1: I know the CB is hidden in here somewhere.
Photo #2: Butterfly Garden

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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

October 14, 2012
11:58 AM

Post #9304837

Last weekend (maybe--I think I'm losing track of time) I made Ray drive me to the Texas Forum NE West or South or Metro (I forget) but anyway we went to a DG Round-Up! It was so exciting to meet people in person whom I had only talked to (a little) online these past 6-8 months. I came away with a haul, although I can say, I can't tell everything apart. The walking iris looks like a daylily or maybe a spider plant (I put it by the bath tub). Rosemary I know, but can i leave it out for winter in a pot, or is it as tender as it was in MA? Do paperwhites and amaryllis really grow in the ground like Home Depot says, or aren't they tender too? Aloe I recognized, but same deal, do I keep it in, or leave it out? I'm prepared to grow everything indoors--I can't GET outside, anyway.

Jim, are you on Medicare yet? If so, you may be able to get them to buy you a power chair or scooter. The sick part is they have to ascertain that you're going to live long enough to be worth their investment. I.e., you have to document that you're not going to up and die on them leaving your heirs with this expensive customized power chair! I always thought that was kind of gruesome. Especially since they won't buy a shower chair or grab bars, but will pay for hospitalization, hip replacement, PT, OT, etc., maybe even nursing home and rehab facility, when you fall and break your hip because of lack of grab bars. Grrr, don't get me started on Medicare. Oh, you have VA stuff--is that instead of, or added to?

Vickie, we've lost power a few times since we've been down here--pretty awful! Are you stocked up or prepared for a longer power outage? Good thing it was only half your house! I hope you have staples, water, TP, etc. stashed somewhere.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 17, 2012
5:25 PM

Post #9308329

Ouch, electrical problems can be hard on the wallet. Did you have to hire an electrician or did you know someone who could do the work? I wonder sometimes what the person who originally wired our place was smoking. It isn’t dangerous, just weird. Rooms at opposite ends of the building are on the same circuit.
Lol. Nadine lost some of her interest in learning how things were done in “the good ole days” when the amount of real labor involved became clear. She still like going to historical fairs to WATCH how things were done. She would practically live at the library if she didn’t have her own computer and access to the web. Kay is chomping at the bit while she learns all the hotkeys needed for blind people to be on the web.
What kind of rosemary did you snag, Carrie. Prostrate rosemary is more tender than the bush variety. I’ve heard of gardeners growing the bush type in ground in zone 7. (In a protected area, I’m sure.)
We grow paperwhites in the ground for whatever that is worth. I even found some growing wild on the edge of the woods. A squirrel or something must have stolen some bulbs and forgot where he buried them.
I don’t think my GP would sign off on a motorized wheelchair. He is a firm believer in his patients doing as much as they can for themselves for as long as they can. On the level I have no trouble with a self-propelled w/c. Pulling myself up hills is tough!!!. The doctor found some things he didn’t like at my checkup yesterday. I have a CT scan tomorrow and an ultra-sound on Friday. I had my flu shot today. I’ve never gotten seriously sick from a flu shot, but I always feel grouchy and tired for that first 24 hours or so afterward.
Kay says she has to change her orange and blue Auburn Tigers fan fall flower bed colors to the red and white of the Alabama Crimson Tide because GD#1 chose to attend the University of Alabama. She is making a list of plants that bloom red or white during football season. lol.
Photo: I guess the scrap metal company that created the infamous pig dressed his creation in a UA jacket to make certain people know he is a University of Alabama fan and not a fan of the Arkansas Razorbacks / ;-) (Jim)


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cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

October 17, 2012
7:35 PM

Post #9308471

UH,Jim...Our colors are red and white also...GO HOGS LOL
Ashamed to say They are already in trouble this year.

Hope those tests turn out ok.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 18, 2012
7:08 PM

Post #9309302

No Stealing our pig that is a feuding matter! LOL.

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

October 19, 2012
8:16 AM

Post #9309687

Yeah Jim, crossing fingers for your tests.

Interesting article series in NYT on what do you do when one little test says you need a specialist who says you need 5 other tests etc. etc. and you wind up spending a lot of money, energy, getting frantic, duplicating tests etc. I guess for most of us those extra tests were worth it; it wasn't a wild goose chase. If I can find it again, I'll include a link to the article.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

October 20, 2012
3:14 AM

Post #9310297

Dad Gum Jim! I'd already got my road maps out.
Still keeping fingers crossed for your tests.
Bought a beef roast yesterday. Will cook it all night with onions. Will throw some potatoes in it along with some carrots. Definately time to start cooking again. May cook the same thing for Thangsgiving. Everyone is complaining about Turkey again. Maybe I could make a meatloaf in the shape of a turkey!LOL Anyone have an idea what kind of dressing I could make with it?

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 20, 2012
11:26 AM

Post #9310617

Yum, now I’m REALLY hungry. Kay rose before I did and ate the leftover eggplant Parmesan for breakfast. That was what I planned to do. I guess great minds think alike. Lucky for her we have more eggplant and I'm is in a cooking mood. It was 48° this morning. Time to dust off the slow cooker.

I heard a funny one yesterday that was new to me. Question: What is the difference between a pigeon and a small farmer. Answer: The pigeon has no trouble making a deposit on a John Deer tractor .

I would have kissed my VA doctor if I wasn’t so scared of her. When she saw all the test I was scheduled for, she went through my recent records and pulled the results for test the VA had already done saving me some money. One more test to go, but it is looking like nothing more serious than a simple infection. I wish the the doctor would just wait and see if the anti-biotic clears things up because this last test is an uncomfortable one, but that just isn’t the way doctors work. Gr-r-r.

In the name of keeping a written record of what is where in the gardens, I decided to count all our containers this morning. I thought there might be as many as 50. Not counting things like my porch rail planters and the “sedum snake” (a retaining wall made of concrete blocks with the cells of the blocks planted.) the total was 145 with more on the work and potting benches to be repainted or re-filled with soil. Sheesh! Kay says we only need about 15 or 20 more. ROFL.



Photos #1 and #2: I didn’t count this one as a container, but I like it. Wrought iron patio sets are pretty, but not very comfortable. A few years ago, Kay put a child’s swimming pool atop a wrought iron table and filled it with soil for planting, but the weight of the soil after an especially heavy rain was too much for one of the table legs. She cut off the table legs with a hack saw and made this. The tomatoes are simple to harvest. I think I will plant snow peas after frost does in the tomatoes.

Photo #3: This is one of Kay’s favorite weeds..um-hum…I mean native plant. It isn’t much to look at when it goes to flower, but the smell is incredible. Very sophisticated scent for something with the common name dog fennel.

This message was edited Oct 20, 2012 12:28 PM

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Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 21, 2012
4:39 PM

Post #9311566


We had church services outside by the river today . The weather was perfect. I discovered I don't sing well acapella. In former years all the churches in the community got together, but some churches aren't showing now. That is sad. Maybe, they have some objections to the afternoon park event. But, if that is the case, they could just leave before it starts. The local military history geeks and gun geeks put on a show. In period costume using period weapons. Why do some people try to politicize everything. If kids knew what a battlefield really looked, sounded, smelled and felt like they wouldn't romanticize war and we wouldn't have so many wars. History would become a visceral thing when a child knew you can feel the vibration of a cannon firing down to your bones. To know that battle is usually a smoky confusion, the air filled with the acrid smell of cordite making your eyes water. I think that is needed to counter act the way TV and movies gloss things over. In today's reenactment they showed a young man lose it and try to run away. He was shot by his commanding officer. That kind of stuff really happened. They showed a field doctor risking his life to treat both his own soldiers and an enemy soldier. That really happened too and the children who were watching saw and applauded him. The story that is portrayed isn't a reenactment of what happened here 149 years ago. Those events would be impossible to stage. That is a story of how 16 people (A few disabled veterans, old men and boys for the most part.) defeated a band of 44 mercenaries saving the town. The people in the reenactment just try to capture the flavor of what the Civil War was like. I can't see anything wrong with that.

Ok I'm done ranting and I'll step down from my soap box lol.

Photo #1: The Gray won this year's battle reenactment. That seems to happen a lot. lol.

Photo #2: But, the Blue and the Gray always take their bows together in the end.

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Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 22, 2012
11:31 AM

Post #9312290

Well I am writing as Amargia but Seacane is still a pain.

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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

October 22, 2012
3:09 PM

Post #9312462

Jim I love your pictures and your stories and point of view. Ray and I don't romanticize war. He had the, er, pleasure of being in one and my parents were such doves that my sister and I weren't even allowed to play with water pistols.

Now something changed by the time my brothers were born, because my brothers definitely played toy soldier type games with each other. The funny thing is my sister and I each had 2 girls, and our two brothers are looking to each have 2 boys, they have 3 so far. And the oldest boy (who is maybe 14 or 15 now) is an expert on ammunition, weapons, nuclear warheads, what gun goes on what plane, the difference between a rifle, revolver, a magnum, a colt, and a pistol and a musket and a crossbow and a long bow and and a drone and yadda yadda yadda blah blah blah. He can go on for hours. You can tell I find it little dull. His little brother is the same way with baseball statistics. But how this future president of the NRA came out of this Quaker pacifist peace march grandmother is quite astonishing. I guess it's all to do with extremes.

I have now rosemary, coleus, walking iris, aloe and a few other things all angry at me that they are inside and not outside!
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

October 25, 2012
1:40 AM

Post #9314732

LOL Brought back memories of Saturday matinees(SP) of westerns and playing cowboys afterwards.No TV back then.
Both my DD,s were soccer and basketball players. As were their sons.They could'nt be called pacifists They were killers on the field.
Carrie,When other plants die from frost,they will thank you.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 25, 2012
11:02 AM

Post #9315114

I stayed for the re-enactment because I was curious to see them fire the cannons. The "throats" of the five the city has collected are different. I was curious about how they would sound. I guess that makes me a sort of gun geek. After the first cannon blast Kay turned her hearing aid off and still flinched every time one went off. I think she and Nadine just hung around for the roast corn, boiled peanuts and funnel cake.
Kay and I both spent most of yesterday in doctor's waiting rooms. Kay finally got in for her 9-o-clock appointment around 11. We just had time to grab lunch and make it to my 1-o-clock appointment in another city. Well, I guess doctor’s appointments are one way to catch up on your reading.
I've been reading “A Nation of Farmers: Defeating the food crisis on American soil" about the connection between the oil supply and the food supply. It made for good Halloween season reading. Scary stuff. The book helped me better understand why Kay is pushing things more into food production. I can support the new direction now that I know my daylilies are safe. Aside from attracting pollinators, you can eat daylilies if you are hungry enough. Lol.The author’s definition of farming is rather loose covering anyone involved in food production.
We were behind a truck hauling peanuts on our way home. I was teasing Kay that if we followed him we could catch enough peanuts blowing off the truck to make our Thanksgiving peanut pie. It is probably a crude winnowing process. The peanuts light enough to blow out of the back of the trucks probably aren't that good, but it does explain why there is the occasional peanut growing alongside the road. (Jim)

Picture#1 is the Cannon that has the loudest voice and you can fell its roar too the bone.
Picture#2 &3 has a deeper roar but wow I think they should name this cannon “Smokey”
Picture#4 here is a picture of a peanut huller wagon quite full huummm could I sneak up there LOL.

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katiebear
mulege
Mexico

October 25, 2012
11:47 AM

Post #9315155

There are several new food plants growing here because of my efforts. While searching for sachi inca seeds I became acquainted with a couple in Costa Rica who are also working to increase the number of food plants that are grown locally. I planted seeds just before we had a tropical storm last week and I now have lots of little plants which I'll be sharing with other people who garden. I have a Hawiian-type papaya which fruited this year (after many failed efforts) and I went to town and passed seeds out. My Malabar spinach has been popping up here and there. I have some goldenberries growing well. We had a little fruit in the spring. I'm hoping they will naturalize. I've shared lots of dragonfruit cuttings. I can get lots of different seeds in Ca. and many companies will send seeds here. They are clamping down on allowing seeds to go from Mexico to Ca.

I'm also growing some things for the birds.

I have a lot of different tomato seeds and my friend Manuel, who has a farm/garden/orchard and I are embarking on seeing if we can get tomatoes to grow here year round.

Many of the fresh fruits and vegetables sold here are not grown locally even though many of them could be with the proper seeds and some effort. This area has been so isolated for many years that there are a lot lot of options now for increasing locally grown food crops.

My neighbors who spend summers in Washington state just got here to their winter home. They are also working on growing new food plants.

katie

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 26, 2012
9:46 AM

Post #9316046

Welcome back, Katie. Hope things are going well post-surgery. You make a good point. Even if the US made all the necessary changes to give us a secure food supply (not very likely until we are forced to in my opinion) Mexico and Canada would also have to implement the changes for it to work.

Amargia could go as local as a 100 mile diet and not have to do without much we are accustom to having. Coffee, chocolate and some spices would be about the only things that couldn't be obtained in a 100 mile radius. For desert regions, areas with wicked winters and highly developed areas, it wouldn't be as doable. No balcony, rooftop or vacant lot could go unused in cities.

Kay's basil collection had already started to look sad inside. She hasn't given up on a fresh supply for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner, however. She put her basil collection in the mini greenhouse. I doubt that will work either. Basil is such a heat lover. I don't know why she tries so hard. The basil that comes out of the freezer taste fine. It is only the texture that suffers.

The spinach is large enough to start harvesting. I snagged a few leaves for sandwiches in place of lettuce. Given a choice between lettuce and spinach, I'll choose spinach every time. (Jim)
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

October 27, 2012
6:48 AM

Post #9316794

Welcome back Katie. You are so sweet to share your seeds.
I've been wanting to start our garden back up,but alas no one in sight is even intrested in gardening. So I'll stick to container gardening and do what I can in wild pickings and learning.
I too think hard times are coming.
Am still a little puny. But will probably live. LOL
One of my grey cats did a special good deed tonight. My white kitten,Foxy (A total pest) had'nt really been accepted by my other cats. Prissy came in with a dead mouse and dropped it down in front of lil Foxy,then sat back and watched the fun. I let Foxy play a couple of hours (Trying not to gag) till I threw the mouse out. It'll be nice to have another mouser around.
Guys, If I got a cellphone would I be able to upload pictures from it to DG? Thats what I may get myself for Christmas.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 28, 2012
12:39 PM

Post #9318091

I'm proud of you, Vickie I'm amazed at how the woman's liberation rhetoric disappears when the dog's kill something. The ladies have decided cleaning up dog gruesome's is "guy's work." lol.

I would love for you to have a camera. I think all the daylily pics Debra (lovemyhouse) posted were taken with a cell phone. The cable to connect the phone to the computer usually comes with a new cell phone. If not, the cable is easy to come by. The electronics department at Wall-Mart usually carries them. I want to upgrade my digital camera to a Canon EOS Rebel, but every time I've saved up for it something happens and I have to use the money elsewhere. I found a great deal on a van this time. I needed a vehicle I could get my w/c in and out of easily more than I needed a new camera.
Kay reminded me of a food item not locally available that I would have a very hard time doing without. Wheat! She also raised an issue I hadn't considered. Not that long ago, when it was normal to eat only local foods, people developed regional deficiencies. If the soil is lacking something, the plant and animal foods that come from that soil will also be lacking something. She said her sister who grew up in Arkansas and Oklahoma developed a goiter due to iodine deficiency. (I guess salt wasn't iodized in those days.) Army recruiters ind WWII spotted the problem also. Health problems making people unfit for service tended to cluster in certain regions. To maintain our health, I suspect CSA's and food exchanges are going to be a necessary part of the future. (Jim)

Photos: In the final stretch of autumn, pink has left yellow in its dust. The hydrangea blooms are even more spectacular now than they were when it was warm. It was too windy to outside so we did a vase of our flowers.

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cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

October 29, 2012
4:54 AM

Post #9318697

Your flowers reminded of my grandmother, who picked all her flowers before a hard freeze and we had a house full of flowers.
One of my school friends mother had a goiter on her neck. It seemed huge.That was back in the 50,s
Grandmother had a small wooden box hanging on the wall in which she kept salt.
Thanks for the info on camara phones. GOOD GREIF! That means I'll have to clean house. LOL

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

October 30, 2012
8:48 AM

Post #9320149

Yay that Katie is back with us! Katie, when I was researching the article on quinoa I found things like US gov't research on "lost" crops of Mesoamerica, including not only quinoa but lots of other stuff I had never heard of (and of course can't remember).

Do you mean that at this time of year there are no more yellow flowers? Up North there are asters (purple and pink) but also helenium, chrysanthemums, black-eyed Susans (and that whole group) which tend towards the fall-type colors of yellow, orange and brown. I'm not even sure what other pink flowers there are besides asters...I'm sure there must be some, though. Well, yeah, hydrangeas are in the pink-purple-blue family.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

October 31, 2012
10:20 PM

Post #9321654

We've only had a brief, tiny taste of cold weather, but the wind was wicked and broke the stems of taller plants like the pink zinnias. I think I will add a more compact form next year. The 'Endless Summer' hydrangea is well named. The only asters that have done well for us have lavender petals and a yellow center. I just finished reading a book specifically on how to garden for fall. Next year, I will plant fewer seeds over a longer period of time and cut back things in summer so we can have flowers like rudbeckias, sunflowers and mums later in the season. Yellow and pink will battle it out again in winter. The tea olives vs. the camellias. That makes up some for not having a fiery leaf display in autumn.

Kay hit on the perfect garden task for Halloween. Prune back the 'Flying Dragon' orange trees. The fact that those two trees are still around is proof that gardeners have a masochistic streak. Some ranchers consider a hedge line of Dragons more effective at keeping livestock in than barbed wire. I believe it. Those two little trees produced more than 100 fruit. I have to admit that is an amazing sight, but I'm happy we only have two

I've been making use of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center Plant ID to learn more about the native flora. Thanks to the site I can say that the purple false foxglove is putting on quite a display. I don't care that it is considered common. I think its bloom time makes it special (Jim)

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 1, 2012
6:56 PM

Post #9322336

Vickie, after telling you how easy it is to download pictures from cell phone to computer, I have to admit that I tried it today and I haven't been able to get my computer to recognize my cell phone. Duh. I'm so bad about losing cells, I do tend to buy cheap ones. Hope you have better luck. (Jim)

Photo: Japanese Hardy Orange 'Flying Dragon: The knights had it easy! They had full armor and they only had to slay dragons. I'm expected to help tame the wicked beast. No fiery breath, but many impressive claws. Picture#1One down. Picture#2 One to go.

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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 6, 2012
3:04 PM

Post #9326369

Jim, how do they taste? What do y'all do with them? No, I am NOT getting an accent. It just seemed like the best word for the job.

So I was trying to write a Veterans Day article but I couldn't figure out what VDay had to do with gardening. DH (my personal Vet) talked about "from the killing fields to the growing fields" but he's better at sounding heartfelt where I just sound sappy. The red white and blue garden has been done, I think. I could do plants named "Stars and Stripes" maybe.
lonejack
Longview, WA
(Zone 8b)

November 7, 2012
10:58 AM

Post #9327045

Hi all,
I want to show these pictures of what i call mt, "Tower Gardens."
I have planted about 10 or 12 different plants in each.
Here in Western Washington, many flowers are still blooming.
I am working on building instructions that will appear later.
Paul.

Thumbnail by lonejack   Thumbnail by lonejack         
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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 7, 2012
2:14 PM

Post #9327191

Hey, Paul, welcome! So, looking good! I see petunias and other stuff I'm too tired to recognize -- S.A.C.? maybe? DH plopped some petunias in the one container he planted out here -- I thought to myself "they'll never make it through intermittent watering and no fertilizing, blah blah blah" but it's a good thing I didn't say anything out loud because guess what's still going strong? Gorgeous white petunias! Looking forward to your instructions.
lonejack
Longview, WA
(Zone 8b)

November 7, 2012
4:02 PM

Post #9327292

Hi Carrielamont,
On the left tower, belonging to a friend on her patio, I have planted:
Day neutral strawberries, purple bush beans, impatiens on the shade side, and sweet 100 tomatoes on
the top, along with the petunias you see.
On the right tower I planted:
Purple bush beans, Day neutral strawberries, swiss chard, lettuce, leeks, impatiens and green peas
on the shade side and grafted tomatoes in the front of the tub.
Today I still have green tomatoes some beans still growing. The strawberries look good but quit
producing the 2nd week of October.
Paul

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 7, 2012
4:55 PM

Post #9327326

Hey, Paul! Long time, no see. Welcome back to the forum. The first looks very doable, but I'd like the challenge of the second one. That's a "Wow!"
Vickie, the book I wanted you to check out is on its way to you. I had Powell Books send it directly to you. Sorry for the delay.
There isn't much of interest to write about at the moment. We are doing our usual autumn clean-up which isn't very exacting. I like to leave most things until February for the birds. The most colorful thing to be found here in January is our cardinals so I try hard to keep them happy. Mostly fall clean-up involves keeping the limbs and pine cones picked up and the pine straw raked. (Pine straw is a slippery problem when it falls on ramps or the slightest slope.) I would like to replace most of the pines eventually., but they are huge and professional arborist are expensive.
Kay has been child-proofing the garden for the holidays while I've been reading a book on making gardens dog friendly and dogs more garden friendly. My dearly beloved is wondering where I'm getting some of the suggestions on child-proofing considering I've never raised a child. I simply remember what I just read and think puppy with disposable thumbs. ;-)
Carrie, other colors kept creeping into my red, white and blue garden. That is why I call it the Old Soldiers Garden now. Things like Purple Heart tradescantia seem appropriate because of their name and symbolism. Others because they have some military history attached. Yarrow was added when I learned soldiers once carried it for stanching wounds. Some are personal remembrances of soldiers that have died. (Not necessarily while still in service.) Kay has added several plantings in honor of disabled vets who were strong influences on her. She learned Braille and perseverance from a man named Travis Ivy who was blinded and partially deafened in WWII. The garden is a bit of a hodge-podge, but every plant has a story revolving around a veteran or being a soldier, in general. I will have to look again to be sure, but I think a veterans organization did one of the specialty gardens at the local botanical garden. It may take a little digging, but I think you can pull off a fresh perspective on veterans and gardening. (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 8, 2012
12:17 PM

Post #9328035

But Jim, I have to do it IMMEDIATELY!!! NO personal vets or stories allowed in my article--it has to be either my story or ALL about your garden. WHY do I always wait 'til the last minute??? (Sorry for caps, just feeling more crazed than normal.)

BirdieBlue

BirdieBlue
Winston Salem, NC
(Zone 7a)

November 9, 2012
5:50 PM

Post #9329284

I am recovering from a, #of serious falls over the past 5-6weeks. Also.
am at the final phase of a2wk really bad cold. Barely moved x
Absolute nesseties. Om told ear balance not working righr.

PS-- computer down &slowly learning this. $#@#%*:+*
Droid max cell

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 11, 2012
12:53 PM

Post #9330463

(((Sheri))) My step-father had some problems with his ear balance and consequently had dizziness and unsteadiness that troubled him for a while. Somehow he got rid of the ear thing without breaking anything. I hope you feel better soon. Falls are no fun.

I have a Droid too and I can check DG on it but I hate trying to post anything--I'm very impressed!!!! I say it's my "smart" phone, and it has me outsmarted.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

November 13, 2012
11:57 PM

Post #9332706

Sheri. Do take care. Whats to be done about your balance problem? Is it an inner ear infection and can be fixed?
LOL I'm computer challanged ...A droid sounds like a Martian.
Jim, Hodge podge gardens are the best kind. They always have a personal touch and story.
Paul, Am jealous of your veggies and your locale. The only place in US I've not been is the northwest.
Glad you joined us.
Tell us about that non southern accent Carrie! Next you'll be saying "taters and maters."ROFLO
People were incouraged to plant gardens during WW2. Am not sure why.But it was the patriotic thing to do.

Looking forward to the book Jim.
Vickie

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 14, 2012
2:56 PM

Post #9333274

Hey, folks, does anyone know anything about BOTTLE TREES? Are they a particularly southern tradition? Do they have to be blue?
katiebear
mulege
Mexico

November 14, 2012
3:26 PM

Post #9333294

I think the Trash to Treasure forum has several threads on them. You can search here or Google them. Originally southern, they are now widespread and all colors. kb

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 14, 2012
4:56 PM

Post #9333357

Yes, I've been looking on the T-to-T forum! Thanks, Katie. I figured I knew some southern folks here. (Don't really know the Texas people yet, and the North East folks are all north and east.)

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 15, 2012
4:30 PM

Post #9334184

Hi, Sheri! Hope you are feeling better. Kay keeps a walker around for her “dizzy blond” days. Something about the shape of the ear canal makes people in her family very prone to ear infections .
Your return made me think of something else I would like to do in the Old Soldiers Garden. I think there should be something especially for the women who have served. Any ideas?
I’ve been educating myself on plant hardiness zone systems. I thought I’d found a system more practical than either the USDA system or the Sunset xone system. The USDA system sounds good until you stop to consider that Dallas and Seattle are in the same zone. The Sunset system has promise, but it
still needs work to be useful in the eastern half of the country. The Kurpin system is something even I can wrap my mind around, butt I can see some problems. We fall solidly into a Kurpin category (sub-tropical). But, I had a much harder time trying to figure out what category Vickie’s stomping ground would be in. (Continental, Mountain or Steepe?) The Kurpin system was developed around 1900 by a meteorologist/botanist namedVladamir Kurpin. Today was the first I had heard of it though. (There might be an article somewhere in our laughable attempts to develop a workable plant hardiness system, Carrie. One that you could actually relate to.)
My attempts to domesticate my wife continue. I was upset with Kay for disappearing into the creek side woods for most of a day. It is a dangerous stretch of woods filled with raveens. Holes and unexpected drops. . I don’t think a person can take two consecutive steps on level ground. I was so worried I went in as far as I could to find her..and discovered why she does it. Along the creek there are plants you don’t see in tamer terrain. I found a gorgeous blue bloom. Can’t find a match for it in the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center database. Maybe, it is a garden escapee or November isn’t its normal bloom time. It could have popped up late after the deciduous trees dropped their foliage and it had more light.
Kay is still in hot water for disappearing so long. They have tracking devices for hunting dogs who get lost in the woods.. I wonder if they have tracking devices for wives.
Photos: Kay ventures into the woods to hug the trees and Braille the different ferns and mosses, but it was the siren call of these blue blooms that drew me in.

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cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

November 16, 2012
12:13 AM

Post #9334425

Loved the pictures. What kind of critter fixed the den? That blue flower is a beautiful blue. If you find out what it is,Id like to know too.
I went for a walk in the woods today also.Had fun kicking leaves.
My cats and my walking cane went along too. My knees will complain mightly next few days. LOL It was a beautiful day. Found some hickory nuts. Acorns are non-existant this year. The deer may need a handout later.Speaking of nuts...I bought a coconut yesterday. Have'nt had one in several years.
Got a great book in the mail today,about container gardening.Thank you Jim and Kay.
Looked at the pictures. Will read it tomorrow.A new book is always so much fun. Later it'll become a good friend.
Give my best to Nadene.How is she doing?
Time to think about Thanksgiving. Grandson is having it at his house.I'm bringing the dressing.Am thankful I don't have to do all the cooking etc.
Christmas shows have started on Hallmark chanel. Much too early but am taping some for later on.
Vickie

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 16, 2012
6:35 AM

Post #9334532

The Morning’s Exchange
K: “Sweetheart, , I’ve been trekking those woods since age 7. “
J.: “You’re not 7[years-old anymore!!!
K.: Yes, I move much slower and more cautiously than I did back then…which means I’m less likely to fall now and gives any creature that wants to avoid me plenty of time to get out of my way.”
J.: “Honey, there are caves back there big enough to house bears!”
K: …but we don’t have bears. It’s too hot for them here.
J: I saw a den dug out of the raveen wall and big tracks around its mouth!”
K: Foxes or feral dogs probably. The mud makes deer tracks look the size of moose tracks.”
J. thinks: “This isn’t working.”
J. says after an appropriate pause: “Oh, I forgot to tell you! I went ahead and purchased the new Zoom Text 10 update.
K: “No kidding! My computer will talk to me again?”
J: Yep, I installed it yesterday. It seems to work fine.”
K. runs to computer and boots up. Plans to wander in the woods forgotten. J. smiles smugly.

Vickie my back is complaining for my jaunt lol seems like I cant do things like a kid any more, DARN oh well there are perks to my age though. Pleas tell us what you think of the book after you have read it. Does it deserve a place on our recommended book list? Nadine is doing well she is loosing mass and muscling up a bit for a job at the Wal-Mart distribution center. (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 16, 2012
1:19 PM

Post #9334810

Oh, Nadine, the Wal-Mart folks are striking on Black Friday because Wal-Mart is making them work on Thursday! Are you a strike-breaker? (Or whatever those people are called that are brought in to cross picket lines...) Jim & Kay, sounds like a match made in heaven. Vickie, our family in Fort Worth says we may not have Thanksgiving at our house; we must go to their house. I guess it's easier that way, but this place still doesn't feel homey. Looking at stockings to buy or make. Congrats to Nadine!

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 18, 2012
3:41 PM

Post #9336459


Sheri, I finally have a positive ID on the crinum I sent your way. They are crinum bulbispermum. The common name Deep Sea Crinum fits them perfectly. Their long, glossy, light blue-green foliage does make me think of a strange sea creature. A very nice smelling one.
Vickie, do you have the crackable kind of hickory nuts? A few years ago Kay handed me a basket full of our local hickory nuts, a length of copper wire and my cordless drill. She asked me to make a simple autumn wreath. Well, it seemed simple. Just drill a hole through the nuts and string them on the copper wire. I had to exchange my cordless drill for the more powerful old corded drill to even make a dent in the nuts. I managed to make the wreath, but it was a struggle. Never again! The shells are tougher than black walnuts! (At least the variety that grows wild here is.) Aside from mixing the wild hickory nuts in a basket with other local nuts as holiday décor, the only use people put the nuts to is tossing a few in the charcoal grill for a hickory smoked flavor.
The holiday tradition is to put the pecans, walnuts and hickory nuts in a rustic basket along with an ornamental nutcracker. I definitely consider it décor. The idea of cracking hickory nuts or black walnuts with a pretty hand cracker is laughable.
Carrie, Nadine says if they were willing to pay her time and a half she would work. After all, the 3rd Thursday in November is an arbitrary date to celebrate Thanksgiving.
Laying out a feast is the easier part of Thanksgiving in my opinion. There are issues to consider when planning the modern Thanksgiving get-together that the pilgrims never had to contend with. Do you dare invite both the new and the former wife? (If you don’t, you will be seen as taking sides.) Do you dare invite the same sex couple when you know there will be others there who are violently opposed to the idea of gay marriage? (Yep, their personal choices are between then and God and it isn’t my place to judge.) Do you invite the biological grandparents of the boy who calls you Grandpa when you know they don’t know how to react to his Asperger syndrome? (I say maybe if they see other people interacting with him they will see how it is done and accept him as is.) There is the usual vegetarian/omnivore conflict. (There are plenty of good vegan dishes to get through that one and you just accept the dietary debate as a holiday tradition. Before the meal begins you give thanks for all the wonderful food and when it is all over you give thanks there were no knockdown-drag out fights. (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 19, 2012
2:25 PM

Post #9337355

Boy, since I'm the new wife...I'll find somewhere else if I know you are inviting HER. We are totally conflicted about where to spend Thanksgiving. We moved out here to spend more time with the grandkids, and I fantasized that we would host Thanksgiving. They said "WE will be hosting thanksgiving...you are welcome to come. What would you like to bring?" Than DH out of nowhere says "do you want to fly to Boston on Thursday and stay 'til Saturday?" I don't KNOW. I think I'm old enough to have Thanksgiving without my mom, but without my kids? They are both going to her house. One of them lives 3 miles away, but the other lives 30 min. away from us in Texas! I was so ready to start some new traditions, but everybody is digging in!

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 19, 2012
2:27 PM

Post #9337357

http://davesgarden.com/guides/articles/view/315/

This was among my first articles. I remember writing it. The rest, not so much, but this one, as if it were yesterday. We don't use footnotes any more. I made cranberry sauce today.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 20, 2012
2:53 PM

Post #9338331

I asked Kay if she would be willing to sit down and share a meal with my former wife. She made a terrible face. Luckily, it was a clean break. There were no children whose feelings had to be considered. That’s good because I would rather eat the banana cream pie than see it dripping from my ex-wife’s face.
Even now we don’t know how many people to expect, but Nadine is coping. We do an open house buffet. That takes a lot of the pressure off. We gather for prayer, then people can fill their plates and sit wherever they want to. The weather is usually comfortable so people can spread out onto the deck and garden tables. Space allows the potentially volatile personality combinations to avoid one another. Our house is small. We pray for good weather. :-)
Kb, do you think horticultural therapy would help a recovering alcoholic? I’ve never heard of hort therapy being used for that purpose, but it is a stress reliever and it seems logical that would help. Since the person has cirrhosis, raised beds would seem like the way to go.
I’m just cleaning house and chilling today. Kay had the idea of putting planting pockets on the outside wall of the w/c ramp for thymes, sedums and the like so she is experimenting with that today. (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 20, 2012
5:02 PM

Post #9338453

I think hort therapy would help anybody!
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

November 20, 2012
7:14 PM

Post #9338667

I know it works wonders for depression.Having alcoholics in the family. I would say it would. Except for my grandson who would find away to make homebrew out of anything sweetish.
OH Jim, I so hear you about the various family members hostile toward each other. We're having a battle royale about gay issues right now. I feel God made them as they are. and my nephews are loving kind people and I love them PERIOD. I also wanted to invite my check forging GS but was totally vetoed.
I would really like to know how Kay does her pockets. I'd like to do the same on my east wall in the spring.
LOL I might give up an apple pie(easy to make another one) but never a banana pie. It'd be a lot more fun to throw ice cream.
Carrie your cranberry article is on the first page. Love it. ALSO LOVE CRANBERRIES! Am going to try the orange-cranberry sauce.
I will be busy tomorrow cleaning too than cooking. I've got the dressing.And the decorating and photography. Than I can decorate for Christmas. Y-E-S-!!!!
Did I ever say my GS has a garden snake in an aquarium,(He feeds it live mice) He also has a kitten and the two seem to get along fine. I cannot accept the fact that a cat and a snake can co-habitate. I would not even go in his house if he were not my grandson.
A container garden would work for someone with a liver problem too. I've injoyed my container book. It first goes into the history of containers,than the plants that do well.Its not a complicated read. but good know how.
I'm feeling torn about a small dog next door to my Texas DD. The dog is middleaged. And has one litter after another she's skin and bones and DD is worried about her. Me too. I would like to go down there and kidnap the dog and bring her home.but I'm full up with pets and can't really afford to have her fixed. Plus my little spoiled Cricket would not take kindly to another little dog. This dog would need TLC. Oh well! decisions decisions.

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 21, 2012
7:10 PM

Post #9339486

Vickie, a snake and a cat both chase mice...when I put that link there, the article was on MY home page. That is strange how that works--you would think everyone's home page would look the same, at least in the same time zone. The only time I got wierded out was once when I got a comment BEFORE an article ran! The comment came from a time zone before ours (duh, um, that would be...) I dunno? Europe? Japan? Somewhere where it hadn't even occurred to me that they would be running. I knew DG was all over the world, and even that we had authors from all over the world, but...this person commented, and I couldn't reply because their comment wouldn't show up on my page yet.

That's very sad about that dog, too, Vickie. You can't save them all, my dear, but I can tell you want to. My uncle used to have a cat (named Butterball, and looked like one) who must have had kittens every 10 weeks until her death from exhaustion. We kept pleading for him to get her spayed but either he couldn't be bothered, was too broke, too cheap, or believed himself when he said that it was 'more natural' to keep her pregnant. And of course all her children, grandchildren, great...etc. had more and more toes! I suppose there's a limit. 7?

When I was little we used to go around and say what we were thankful for but now (at my mother's) we just tuck in. I have a feeling it will be considerably different at the DIL's in Fort Worth tomorrow. It's my step-son, so I am "my father's wife" or usually just "my father and Carrie." "Go kiss Grandpa goodnight! Don't worry about that lady in the wheelchair he always drags around." I have no idea who's going to be there. Thanksgiving was always a holiday to invite in everyone without a family, Christmas not so much. You guys are practically my family.
katiebear
mulege
Mexico

November 22, 2012
6:02 AM

Post #9339753

Get your recovering friend to plant things like beans; they grow fast. Almost instant gratification.

Carrie, my father died on Thanksgiving - many years ago. It's still difficult. He was an alcoholica and depressed and ruined many holidays. And other days. Thanksgiving was him doing his best to ruin one last holiday.

I have my Christmas thing for the kids here that helps get me through but these are difficult timesfor many of us.

My suggestion: Take some small age-appropriate toys, stuffed animals, whatever for the kids and make friends with them. Few children are as bigoted as their parents, at least when young. If nothing else, make faces at the kids. Smile and be happy. You don't have to cook and if you fall asleep in your wheelchair they probably won't notice.

Not sure I'm cheering you up.

Time for a pain killer and attempts to wake up and h elp Tony.

hugs, katie

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 22, 2012
8:23 AM

Post #9339886

Eh, Katie, it's all a sociological/anthropological experiment. I feel like Margaret Mead. My DIL's father died on Thanksgiving Friday 10 years ago, so it's a big deal for her too. She's had three kids since then! This 2.5 years is just one looooong Margaret Mead type trip,then we'll go back, turn the heat up and build a sun-room. Hugs to you too, and Happy Thanksgiving to Everyone!

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 23, 2012
9:32 AM

Post #9340516

Another Thanksgiving dinner without any casualties. I am thankful!
Had a breakfast of sweet potato pie around 10-o-clock.. Love Black Friday! Kay is still in pajamas, drinking coffee and trying to decide which of the two kinds of cranberry nut bread we ended up with she likes best. Nadine did her pink fluffy angel thing and delivered pink fluffy fruit salad to absentees last night, but we still l have a big bowl of it. Lunch?
Thanks, Kb. T. has had her own vegetable garden and enjoys cooking. Edibles would be the way to go. I bet there are some things like miner’s lettuce that would laugh at our excuse for a winter so she can start right away. The spinach hasn’t been fazed so far, but we are expecting nighttime lows in the 30’s tomorrow night. Time to do something with the still green tomatoes. The survival of plants seems to have as much to do with how long it stays cold as the cold temperatures themselves. Lots of veggies survive our nighttime dips.
Vickie, I know what you mean. I would like to buy the neighbor’s mule, trim his hooves, and give him a proper brush and curry. But, what would we do with a mule. Nadine slips the old guy apples and that’s about all we can afford to do. Kay has been singing, “I want an orange rhinoceros for Christmas.” That means we will be decorating for Christmas tomorrow if we are all recovered enough. (I wonder if I can come up with an orange rhino somewhere.)
Carrie, someone once made plushy toys like teddy bears in w/c’s and bunnies with dark glasses and canes. You might want to check and see if those are still around. It would be a conversation starter with the child. (Maybe, I can make an orange rhino with dark glasses and a cane. Lol. I do think rhinos are near-sighted.)
Hope everyone has a good holiday weekend. (Jim)


Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 23, 2012
10:49 AM

Post #9340546

Yumm Green Tomatoes.
How do i want to save these hummm? Maybe I'll look at the recent article on them. (Jim)

Thumbnail by Amargia
Click the image for an enlarged view.

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 23, 2012
11:24 AM

Post #9340567

It was GREAT! There's one little boy, youngest of four loud kids, so he doesn't say much and he's been slow to talk and potty train. He's 2.5 now and says hi and bye-bye and has pretend names for his siblings, says Mama and Dada and nana, nono and something else for his other brother, I can't remember. Anyway, his interaction with me so far: he brings me my purse. Wherever I am, he'll bring my purse. Last night he was knocking over towers the other kids were building, not in a really determined way, just sort of bored, and I said "Colin, can you bring me my purse, please?" He spent the next 15 min searching for it. Also he likes to push my wheelchair, either with me in it or not. And last night he offered up his mouth for a kiss goodbye!!! I would never presume to demand one, but if it's offered, definitely! >>>wow
IO1
Waaaay Down South, GA

November 23, 2012
12:53 PM

Post #9340632

Carrie, stopping by to let you know I made your fresh cranberry sauce. Delightful!! Thanks for the recipe. I also enjoyed the article. ☺ And I see you're now a southerner. Big Grin

Hugs and Happy belated Thanksgiving to each of you ... ~Susan

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 23, 2012
1:04 PM

Post #9340633

Oh Susan, hooray! Whole berry cooked, or raw blender with sugar? I brought whole berry and whole wheat bread to Thanksgiving yesterday--we brought most of it back home with us. Philistines! They served jello salad and white rolls. The red food group and the starchy food group!!!
IO1
Waaaay Down South, GA

November 23, 2012
1:31 PM

Post #9340648

I did the whole berry cooked. It was very good. I intend to try the other suggestions. Cranberries are my fav. I absolutely love anything with them in it.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 24, 2012
5:26 AM

Post #9341089

Hi, Susan. Glad you dropped in. The orange flavored cranberry sauce is the only kind Nadine will eat.
Glad things went well, Carrie. You’re lucky with the purse. My contribution to child entertainment is mostly a matter of blowing up balloons and letting the air out with a rude squeak and playing the harmonica so Fenny-dog will “sing.” It endears me to 3-year-old Jake, but doesn’t do much for my popularity with the adults present.
Ha, Kay was wrong. I can add another bit of information to my arsenal to keep her from wandering the north woodland by herself. There ARE bears in Florida and I don’t think bears respect state lines. People said there were no cougars around anymore until someone in South Georgia had a problem with a Florida cougar killing his livestock. I should have remembered about the bears. “Gentle Ben” and “Flipper” were favorite TV shows when I was a kid. (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2012
8:14 AM

Post #9341913

I probably should have mentioned that the purse in question is bright safety-vest orange pleather--childish, I suppose. If you had asked me 18 months ago, I would have sworn that I would make it through the rest of me life without owning any pleather, but then I saw this bright orange one in Spain. People recognize me not by the wheelchair, or my crew cut, or my rugged good looks, but by my orange purse!

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 28, 2012
7:45 AM

Post #9344588

Maybe I should get Kay one of those and tell her it’s rhino hide. :-)
Spent over an hour at the doctor’s office yesterday before they thought to tell me my surgery had been re-scheduled so my pre-op appointment had been re-scheduled also. Gr-r-r-r!!!
I’m finishing up the green tomato mincemeat today. The recipe isn’t difficult, but it is time consuming since the tomatoes have to sit in a brine for 8 hours or so. I didn’t fully appreciate how many green tomatoes we had until it was time to cut them into thin slices. ;-)
Kay is moving the cotton rose. It didn’t bloom this fall and she suspects the Chinese chestnut is shading it too much. That will probably take her all day. The “rose” (actually a form of hibiscus) is over my head in height. The other “rose” (Rose of Sharon, yet another form of hibiscus) is doing okay on the other side of the chestnut. I guess RoS can tolerate more shade without the bloom being affected.
Isn’t it odd the way the names of favorite flowers like “rose” and “lily” are tacked on to plants that have nothing to do with the Rosa or Lilium family. But then, I have a hard time getting my mind around the fact that onions are in the lily family and wild blackberries are in the rose family. (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 28, 2012
5:17 PM

Post #9344955

Onions act enough like lily members that I can figure that out easily enough--they have a similar fragrance, foliage (I;m thinking of daffodil or crocus foliage, not Easter lily type lilies). I guess for me it's a bigger jump that Orienpets and snowdrops are in the same family. Now blackberries and roses ...both have thorns, or SHOULD, have similar foliage, kinda, I mean they are certainly more like each other than either is like onions. The only reason you would think blackberries and onions are similar is that they are both eaten, and I think in their case that really means not poisonous. I don't think any scientist or university would spend a nickel on breeding a poisonous for food production!
IO1
Waaaay Down South, GA

November 28, 2012
7:41 PM

Post #9345084

We had tomatoes here last year up until Christmas, but I was lazy and didn't have a garden, but I picked 105 lemons off my Meyer night before last. I'll get a picture of them. I'm still squeezing and putting them up. Am baking things to share for the holidays, also. I'm set with plenty of lemons for a looong time. Sorta wish it was an orange. I long for a Mandarin orange tree.

Jim, y'all have the most interesting gardens. It would be a fun place to see.

Carrie, I'm no good with the children. I think I have managed to win some favor with 1 of my grt nieces this year. I've heard her say something she wanted for Christmas and went straight to Amazon and ordered it. She's 3, so that will be fun. I love Amazon!

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 29, 2012
10:20 AM

Post #9345444

Yes, I guess I can see the similarity between wild blackberries and some of the species roses when I really think about it.
Stop by if you find yourself in this neck of the woods, Susan. (Now there is a southern phrase I’d like to know the origin of. Woods have necks?) Yum, fresh lemonade and a source of fresh lemon zest you don’t have to worry about. I always wonder when I zest a lemon what has been used on the peel to make it last in shipping and storage. We are going to have to add a Meyer’s lemon to the garden somewhere. (That is one you can grow, Carrie. I’m almost certain it is hardy in Zone 8a.) I’ll keep my eyes open for an Owari Satsuma mandarin, Susan, if you have the space for one. They are called “zipper-peel mandarins” because they are so easy to peel. There is an Owari orange orchard nearby. It is a grafted variety, but the best tasting I’ve seen for the northerly reaches of citrus country.
13 jars of vegetarian mincemeat! We will probably have to include recipes on how to use it if we give any as gifts. I think I will try the mincemeat cookie recipe I saw.
Kay is getting smart in her old age. She separated a few rooted stems from the cotton rose’s root ball, wrapped a tow strap around the remaining root, saturated the area with water, then pulled the root out of the ground with the lawn tractor. The whole process took about an hour. She included me in Amargia because she thinks people who are successful despite a lazy streak have learned to use their brain power instead of their muscle power. It’s nice to see my influence at work. Lol.
We are still putting up Christmas decorations. I suppose you are already sipping eggnog and admiring your handiwork, Vickie. What’s the angel count up to? :-) Jim
picture #1 The canned mincemeat.

Thumbnail by Amargia
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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 29, 2012
3:20 PM

Post #9345651

Susan, THAT'S the 21st century way of being good with kids. That and I think, not insisting that they call you certain ways or feel certain ways or kiss and hug you if they don't want to.

My father (40 years ago or more) insisted that we kiss his new girlfriend. UGH!! No way! That was a sure way to get me not only to dislike the girlfriend but also my father. My kids' father did the exact same thing...first mother's day with new step-mother, he encouraged "step-mothers" day in place of mothers day. Let me just say, they currently abhor BOTH step-mother and birth father, and adore step-father MORE than me! Meanwhile, on the other side, DSS and his wife, whom I consider DDIL, and their 4 kids (all of whom call me "Carrie"), whom I consider my DGC, had a HUGE fight with the ex-wife, DM of DSS, got that? The actual grandmother by blood of these four kids. Her name is "Grandma F," although she last met them when the oldest was 3 and the two youngest didn't exist. None of them remember her, and she has never met half of her grandkids. She wanted them to call her boyfriend "Grandpa." (Not that they'll ever meet him.) But DDIL's father died 10 years ago, when the oldest grandchild was 2. He was Grandpa, my DH is Grandpa, not some newly acquired boyfriend. I even see why they don't want to call me anything but Carrie. At first, it didn't make sense to me, because to the kids, I've always been there. But I realize now (writing about it) that pet names (granny, mommy) are as much for the parents as for the child. Just don't draw a line on the sand "either call me auntie Susan-love or you're no child of mine!"

Anyway, Susan, just divorce yourself from caring what the outcome is and think of something you CAN do to make a connection with a kid. Buying something on Amazon is an excellent start. Even better if it's something you can associate with yourself, play with when you see the kid, help name it together or figure out how it works together. I'm always afraid of saying "where's the helicopter we sent?" and hearing "oh, were you the idiots who sent that? It fell apart in the first hour." But little kids do like grownups who are willing to make car noises for a long time.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

November 30, 2012
7:52 AM

Post #9346154

Things are one way to connect to kids, but it can get you into hot water with the parents. A visiting child got a kick out of my harmonica and he seemed to have a natural aptitude for music so I gave him an extra harmonica I had. I bet his mothers were ready to strangle me before they reached the Mississippi line on their road trip back to Texas. Lol. My SD would give me an eye roll when I gave her daughters toys that had lots of pieces like Leggo blocks. The GD’s loved them, but scattered them everywhere.
I’ve never been a biological parent and my SD’s were teenagers before I became a permanent fixture in their lives. Small children are still a bit of a mystery to me. My SGSs call me Grump-pa. Since they tease me about my grumpiness, I guess it is safe to say I don’t intimidate them very much. I growl at them like a bear and they give me their best bear growls back. They accept me as is so I do likewise
I wonder about the way doctors diagnose children with diseases when their development varies from average. Little Jake is supposed to have Asperger’s because he’s never liked cuddling or any kind of physical contact and he doesn’t look at people when he talks to them. But, he was climbing on me like a tree within the first hour he was here. He just seemed selective about who he would touch and he wanted to initiate the contact.
He actually seemed more intelligent and aware than most children that age. Some of his behavior seemed odd until I realized what was going on in his head. He would run over and touch his fingers to Kay’s lips, do the same to his mother and then touch his own mouth. It took me a while to get it. Skin and hair color can vary wildly in Kay’s family, but most members of the family share a distinctive mouth. (Kay, Jake and his mother all have the distinctive mouth.) Kay’s coloring is what you would expect in northern Europe and Jake’s is more African, yet he worked out on his own that Kay was family. They say children with Asperger’s syndrome don’t make personal connections. It looked like tracing his connections to people was exactly what he was doing.
Kay is setting up the mini greenhouse today. We don’t heat it, but it keeps things warm enough at night that we can keep lettuce going all year. I’m running a slight fever so I think I will just clean house today. (Jim)
IO1
Waaaay Down South, GA

November 30, 2012
12:28 PM

Post #9346336

Okay, here's the lemon picture. So far I have 10 8 oz bottles of lemon juice in the freezer along with lemon slices in a gallon zip for my water. I'm still baking ... LOL

Thumbnail by IO1
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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 30, 2012
1:15 PM

Post #9346355

Oh, Susan, YUM! Too bad you can't save them fresh.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

December 2, 2012
10:31 AM

Post #9347684

Wow, and all of those are from a single tree? We wouldn't need more than one then.
(Jim)
IO1
Waaaay Down South, GA

December 2, 2012
11:32 AM

Post #9347740

Yep, I couldn't believe it! Last year we got all of 15 to 18. Can't remember exactly. I'm not even a good plant Mommy. It hasn't been cared for properly, but I'll do better now! ☺ I didn't have to pick them. I'm afraid I was an alarmest the other night. They would have been fine on the tree and would have lasted longer ... sigh
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

December 4, 2012
1:14 AM

Post #9349284

How wonderful to have real and fresh lemons! Of course AM SO jealous!
My Christmas tree is up and angels and Nativity scenes scattered all around.
My nephew was up today and brought me venison. Have started an afghan for him.
Packed up some Christmas ornaments to send to Texas DD.and some for my grandson. I give and give Christmas ornaments than after Christmas I start collecting again.
Jim, I've never grown up. I played games with my Gkids. We went hiking, raked leaves and jumped in the middle of them. fished, camped, I went to soccer and softball games,Painted our faces with water colors. I never get to see my G grandson. They're divorced so my fun days are over,and I don't know him. The saddest thing tho is my DD and her husband never see this child because their son, his father told them not to see him. I plan on working on that problem next year. I never got to see my father or his family and know what a sad loss that is.
I've started saving coupons. Have decided it's hard work but worth it. I used to save them years ago.
Vickie

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

December 4, 2012
3:57 PM

Post #9349882

I’ve seen people in the stores with those coupon wallets that are like little filing cabinets. I’m afraid I could never be that organized. I’ve even had these people give me coupons in the aisles or at the check-out when they have a coupon for something I have in MY basket. Lol. How can they remember what they have with all those coupons?
I’ve done that with blueberries, Susan. I know they can stay on the bush long after the berries turn to blue, but they just look so good.
I chose the new chrysanthemum this year. I loved the color of this one. It mirrors the sunset colors. And, it is a hardy perennial type. (Jim)

Thumbnail by Amargia   Thumbnail by Amargia         
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carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

December 5, 2012
12:51 PM

Post #9350610

The coupons I find are usually for things I would not otherwise buy. Jim, that is a GORGEOUS chrysanthemum! In Boston, they would sell ones as "hardy mums" which may have been hardy but they were NOT perennial. Or maybe if you plant them in July so they get a head start, they would perennialize but not if you stick them out in November! I'm just grouchy and grinchy because it's too close to Christmas.

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

December 6, 2012
3:57 PM

Post #9351630

Just got back from major first neuro appt in Dallas. Biggest news to me: I am colorblind in my left eye. I LOVE color...but maybe that's why I like such crazy combinations, and can't read in dim light, and have trouble if there's not enough contrast and keep closing one eye.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

December 7, 2012
7:19 AM

Post #9352123

Carrie, have you already personalized your computer screen for high contrast? I didn’t know color blindness could only affect one eye.
Yellow and white are showing up more and more in the garden. Kay says the majority of fragrant flowers are one of those colors. That may be true, but I also suspect the colors are showing up more frequently because those are colors Kay can still see a little. The “wind horses” she attaches to her guidelines also prominently feature yellow and white giving her some visual input in addition to the snapping and jingling of the wind horses.
After scheduling me for surgery, my doctor suddenly realized he hadn’t tried treating me with medication first. He realized this after the expense of the entire pre-op test. I think a new doctor is in order.
The purchase of the van, increases in insurance and unanticipated medical bills are making for a lean Christmas this year. Fortunately, I buy toys for the kids whenever I come across one I think they might like so the children won’t notice. The adults on our list will receive gifts from the garden and kitchen. I think I will dig in my jewelry making supplies and see if I can create something for the ornament exchange at Kay’s family get-together. (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

December 7, 2012
7:33 AM

Post #9352137

Jim, this is all in the optic nerve or the brain. I didn't know anything about it; no-one has given me one of these tests with the little colored dots since I was elementary school age, that I can remember.
http://www.toledo-bend.com/colorblind/Ishihara.asp
It looks (to me) like I have red-green color blindness. But I see colors! It's not just all grey! The dots just don't form a pattern of numbers.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

December 10, 2012
10:49 AM

Post #9354730

Carrie, NOW you tell me there aren’t necessarily any figs in figgy pudding! We planted 8 fair sized fig trees Friday and put a few little ones aside for trade. Oh well, I guess we will have to find other uses for all the figs. Lol. Seriously, excellent article. Loved the caroling song. I’ve always heard old English Christmas celebrations were rowdy affairs. I remember reading somewhere the British government once went so far as to try and outlaw Yuletide celebrations.
I discovered a downside to listening in to Kay’s audio books. She just read “Eating Animals” by Jonathan Fore. I turned the book off open air so I couldn’t hear it after the section on the factory farming of chickens, but it was too late. I had Greek pizza for dinner ( thick crust with feta sauce and tomatoes with spinach and feta topping) and okonomiyaki (cabbage pancakes) for breakfast. I’m sure I’ll be able to stomach meat again SOMEDAY! Since I can’t imagine going without meat forever, chickens are in Amargia’s near future. (I’ve had a design for a chicken tractor bouncing around in my head for some time. Now I feel inspired to build it. Nadine is teasing me because I had her buy kosher beef, but I’m assuming kosher meats have a second round of quality monitoring. I’m keeping my ears out of Kay’s books from now on. (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

December 10, 2012
11:40 AM

Post #9354761

You can put figs in figgy pudding! You may put all the figs in you wish, Jim, dear. I'm not sure what fresh figs would have been doing in England, but I tend to forget that the UK is not equivalent to the US in terms of climate range. I mean, no way could you have fresh figs in Boston in winter, but now I've forgotten if that was the one that was made a year ahead of time? I confuse myself with these articles.

I'm putting together vision troubles the neuro found with the trouble filling out the tax form when the printer was low on black ink and printed it in orange or something and I COULD NOT SEE THE flipping little boxes to put the numbers in...no wonder. That cost me a few bucks. What was a boring annoyance a few years ago was IMPOSSIBLE this spring. The numbers would not line up with the boxes. Yeeesh. No wonder.

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

December 13, 2012
10:02 AM

Post #9357294


I hope the doctors keep a close eye on that, Carrie. One of the first symptoms Kay exhibited before her vision took this last dive was an inability to tell blue from purple. You know how on a search a clicked link turns from blue to purple. She wasn’t able to tell what she had clicked on and what she hadn’t. They should probably come up with something other than blue to purple for the color blind. Discerning those two colors seems to be fairly common. Nadine’s father was color blind. He had a bright purple polo shirt he always swore was blue. After it was pointed out to him the shirt was purple, I think he wore it just to be contrary. lol.

It has been rainy and cold (by our standards) the last few days. Days in the high 50’s. Nights in the high 30’s. Hope the new fig trees survive this.

Kay has been inspecting the pasture behind the house to see if it is fit to graze hair sheep on. They will happily eat Japanese honeysuckle. Sheep might be worth it just to get rid of those. The only problem I see, is their access to the pasture would have to be limited in July when they might gorge themselves on too many blackberry fruit. I sure wouldn’t mind seeing fewer blackberry brambles. (Jim)

carrielamont

carrielamont
Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

December 14, 2012
11:46 AM

Post #9358168

Me too, Jim! I think they think it is "just" part of MS. I know it's possible to be legally blind, severely visually impaired, from neural damage, but I always felt grateful that I didn't fall in that category. DH and I have had a long-standing dispute about a room I swore was orange and he considered pink. Heh, I'm supposed to have good eyes, he doesn't.

Good luck on your fig trees...have I ever had a fig (not in a Fig Newton)? Not sure.
cando1
Ozone, AR
(Zone 6a)

December 16, 2012
3:20 AM

Post #9359582

I LOVE FIGS!! I do have a fig tree.My only problem the blue Jays also know I have a fig tree. We have war till the figs are gone.The Jays usually win. I've threatened to get a large net to throw over the tree.
Jim, the problem with sheep is they eat everything down to the literal ground. I'd like to have a couple of goats and your chicken lawnmower. Good luck with your sheep.
Got the afghan finished and to my nephew. Am making scarves and houseshoes for the DD and friends. The house will just have to wait till after Christmas.
Wont be long till seed catalogs come. Thats as big a thrill as Christmas.
One of my nephews is colorblind with blues,greens and reds. He has to note if the signal lights are on at the top or bottom of the signal.
I am so very thankful I can see in color.Hearing gets worse everyday tho.Sometimes I wonder if thats not a good thing. LOL

Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

December 16, 2012
1:09 PM

Post #9359977

Hi, Vickie. Glad to see you are still hangin’ with us. It will be just a few sheep in a large, highline field. I think sheep will be better than the herbicides the power company uses. I wanted to ask. How close are you to Fayetteville? Kay wants African hair sheep because they can handle our humid climate. I would like to avoid the wicked horns of the original breed, however, with a cross like Katahdins. The Katahdin parent stock originally came from the Virgin Isles and they are named after Mt. Katahdin in Maine, but, today, the largest number are found in Arkansas, especially around Fayetteville. That may be where I end up going for good breeding stock. Kay’s family party was yesterday. They played Dirty Santa instead of having a straight ornament exchange. Kay ended up with a lovely dill pickle ornament. ROFL. Yep, I’ve married into a very…INTERESTING family. (Jim)
Photo #1: See, I’m not putting you on. Kay with her dill pickle ornament and Tatter/dog going, “Huh?”
Photo #2,3: Don’t you love those people in your neighborhood who go all out at Christmas! We are so far off the beaten path we don’t do much outdoor decorating.

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Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

December 18, 2012
10:02 AM

Post #9361464

Vickie, that is why we are dividing up and multiplying our fig trees. The blue jays appear to be as competent as humans at determining the peak of ripeness and they rise earlier than we do. The early birds not only get the worm, they get the figs too.
We received our Camellia Farm catalog. I’ve put it aside for Christmas day. Kay and I can go through it then and choose our spring additions.
Carrie, put the word out you are interested, and you can try fresh figs this summer. I would bet someone in your area grows them. I’ve never seen them in the store even in this area where they are common, but I have seen ads by growers in the local classified papers. I mean those little newspapers that are all classifieds that are found at the checkout counters of convenience stores for free. (Is there an official name for those kinds of papers? Locally, they have names like “The Thrifty Nickel” or “American Classifieds.)
Amazingly, most of Kay’s basil plants are still alive. The Genovese is the only one that has died so far. But, she is going to extremes to keep them. They are in a south facing window and also have artificial light. Personally, I’m just as happy with our summer harvest from the freezer. Now that Kay has proven she can do what most say can’t be done, she will probably be happy with our frozen summer harvest too. Telling my dearly beloved she can’t do something is the easiest way to get her to do it. ;-)
It has been overcast and rainy the last few days. I’m going out to enjoy some winter sunshine. Then, I guess I’ll start a new thread. (Jim)
Photos: I would never do this kind of elaborate Christmas decorating, but I’m glad someone does Kay Loves Tigger.

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Amargia

Amargia
SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL
(Zone 8b)

December 18, 2012
5:56 PM

Post #9361833

Lol. I stayed outside all day.
This thread is continued at: Lol. http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/1291474/

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