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Friday, November 6, 2009


Hello from your Garden Daddy here at the garden home! On Tuesday, 11/05/2009, the Master Gardener Intern class had a full 3-hours on "attracting backyard/large plot wildlife". Our 2-speaker spots were filled by first our MG intern director/coordinator with a power point presentation and the 2nd half was with a hands-on and sample display by a long time MG and MG Board Member who brought feeders, pole skirts, bird houses, seed varieties and many other samples of home made and "bought" items for our visual enlightenment. I know I enjoyed this class very much and I know my middle brother would have not only had a blast but could have easily "TAUGHT" this class as well. He is someone I look to for vast information in this area and for critter/bird identification as well. He & his wife are well versed in this topic and I treat them like royalty in this area!
With only 3-more MG classes to go (has it really almost come and gone?) some in our group have suggested we remain in close contact on a monthly work day meeting out at WTREC with Mr. Jason Reeves, horticulturist and well known & talented plant/garden enthusiast. I do not know if that will pan out but the thought that we have connected so strongly is something I had hoped would happen as an added benefit on this course. I do not know many people here in Jackson, mostly the folks I work with really, and I had wondered if it were possible to make new friends here in this way. I have met 100+ other Master Gardeners who are already finished with internship and on the road for a lifetime love of gardening and community garden service and teaching. This is where this is all heading for us educate the public, build community through gardening and to make lifelong friends with like minds for a love of the land and the soil, not dirt, but soil remember?
On to the update of the garden home prep for the 2009 LANA Holiday Home Tour, Dec. 4-6, 2009 - another plug of course! I just want to say Thank You to my youngest brother who stopped by Tuesday afternoon to take some excess furniture items off my hands for the "AMAZING GRACE MISSION", located in Westmoreland, TN. He is the executive director and "all hands on deck" man behind this effort in Sumner County, TN. Within the last two weeks, largely due to his efforts, this food bank, clothing hand-out and furniture gathering effort gave out approximately 10,000-lbs of food in one day. I know he is proud and confident that much good is being done in his community. Now I can get the last room, the 1/2-story upstairs, prepped and decorated, etc. for the tour. The new refrigerator arrived on schedule on Tuesday and boy is it ever roomy. I have never had a brand new refrigerator before and at 56-y/o (on Tuesday 11/10 actually - sorry, another plug right) this is a real treat. With a 9.9-cu.ft. freezer, it looks so empty till next summer when I will fill it with summer squash, tomato soup/sauce mix and eggplant. The freezer is also a great place to store your garden seeds, excess and new, that need the "cold" to help the seeds germinate the next year or to just hold them long-term till planting becomes more timely. Just put in "zipper" freezer bags and you are good to go.

My plan for next year here at the garden home is to completely revamp the entire veggie patch and move into not seeing how many plants can I possibly sustain in the space but to get the biggest bang out of a few more types of vegetables that can and will freeze easily. This year I had 37 tomato plants which was way to many and again it got so ridiculous I was starting to "espalier" the vines onto the temporary fence panels I erected for supports. For those gardeners who are not familiar with that term it means "the horticultural technique of training trees through pruning and grafting in order to create formal "two-dimensional" or single plane patterns by the branches of the tree". Go to: & see many examples of this technique.
This opens a whole other discussion I will not go into here but you can search for this on any "engine" and learn more. But I hope to have a real (!) teaching garden, open for private tours, within 2-3 years from now. I am making plans to use my yard for some public education by way of the Master Gardeners ideals in that area, with tours for the new and upcoming interns in the future. Of course again, that is 2-3 years away. Knowing myself I will be ready before that self imposed deadline of course. So keep your eyes to your Garden Daddy for updates and more gardening news.
I leave you with this gardening affirmation for this week: "I cannot endure to waste anything as precious as autumn sunshine by staying in the house. So I spend almost all the daylight hours in the open air.- Nathaniel Hawthorne


  1. Thanks for the nice words! Now, what about those goats?!?

  2. Help, Dani...Where are you when I need you? What & WHOSE GOATS???

  3. Oh yes, I remember now..."Anonymous-Sid's" goats. I had forgotten about his goats he wants me to raise (for him for his cheese making) when I "buy the farm"! That is WHOSE goats - sorry Charlie.