Gardener's Grapevine 2011.07.07

Written by David Green.

“Knee high by the fourth of July” ring a bell with anyone? It’s an old saying that supposedly means if the corn is knee high by the fourth of July it will be a good crop. 

Traveling back and forth to Maumee every day I see lots of fields and gardens. Around Assumption the crops are really excelling. I see wheat fields that are so beautiful and have really full heads. There is something so peaceful about the golden wheat waiving in the breeze and watching it ripple in the sunlight. I go to work as the sun is rising and it throws multiple shades of yellow and gold across the field—a very beautiful thing to see first thing in the morning.

It amazes me how a simple seed with very little assistance becomes a plant, and even without a flower can be a glorious site. Plants are very resilient and can grow in the strangest places.

My friend Mary Johnson has a columbine that grows every year in a crack in the concrete on her back patio. There is no nourishment other than what is in the crack and no water except the rain, yet a two foot hardy plant grows not just one year, but every year! It flowers just as beautiful as any other columbines in the gardens.

Nature is all around us and so many people just fly by without ever seeing most of it. Last week Art and I were driving home in the evening down Gorham Street and in the fields behind the houses on the east side were two sets of deer. The first set appeared to be two does grazing and they looked so regal standing in the field. Just outside the city limits, way back towards the woods, were a doe and her twin fawns grazing.

If you drive the speed limit or over in life you miss the fawns grazing, the morning wheat waving in the sunlight, and the oriole sitting on the roadside wildflowers.

Have you ever sat on the porch in your own yard and just done nothing but listen to whatever is there? Sure, there is going to be “commercial” noise such as automobiles and the noise of daily life, but there are lots of different birds each with their own individual calls, bees working, squirrels being squirrelly, sometimes a tree creaking. 

When I add to my gardens, I think about what will utilize what I add. Certain things are attracted to certain plants and objects. Next week I will talk about what attracts what in the garden.

  • Front.bridge Cross
    STEP BY STEP—Wyatt Stevens of Morenci makes his way across a rope bridge Sunday during the Michigan DNR’s Great Outdoors Jamboree at Lake Hudson Recreation Area. The Tecumseh Boy Scout Troop constructed the bridge again this year after taking a break in 2016. The Jamboree offered a variety of activities for a wide range of age groups. Morenci’s Stair District Library set up activities again this year and had visits with dozens of kids. See the back page for additional photos.
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    LEADING THE WAY—The Morenci Area High School marching band led the way across the pedestrian bridge on Morenci’s south side for the annual Labor Day Bridge Walk. The Band Boosters shared profits from the sale of T-shirts with the walk’s sponsor, the Morenci Area Chamber of Commerce. Additional photos are on the back page.
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    LOOKING UP—More than 200 people showed up at Stair District Library Monday afternoon to view the big celestial event with free glasses provided by a grant from the Space Science Institute. The library offered craft activities from noon to 1 p.m., refreshments including Cosmic Cake from Zingerman’s Bakehouse and a live viewing of the eclipse from NASA on a large screen. As the sky darkened slightly, more and more people moved outside to the sidewalk to take a look at the shrinking sun. If you missed it, hang on for the next total eclipse in 2024 as the path comes even closer to this area.
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    THE MAYOR—Cecil Schoonover poses with a collection of garden gnomes that mysteriously arrive and disappear from his property. Along with the gnomes, someone created the sign stating that he is the Mayor of Gnomesville. He hasn’t yet tracked down the people involved in the prank, but he’s having a good time with the mystery.
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    TAKE A BREAK—Last Wednesday’s session of Stair District Library’s Summer Reading Program ended with a quiet period in a class presented by yoga instructor Melany Gladieux of Toledo. Children learned a variety of yoga poses in the main room at the library, then finished off the session relaxing. Additional photos are on page 7. Area children are invited to visit the library today when the Michigan Science Center presents a flight program at 11 a.m. and roller coasters at 1 p.m.
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    THE DERBY—Tyler “Smallpox” Flakne of Minnesota’s Home Run League All-Stars goes for the fence Friday night during the National Wiffle League Association’s home run derby in Morenci. This year the wiffleball national tournament moved from Dublin, Ohio, to Morenci’s Wakefield Park. During the derby, competitors had two minutes to hit as many home runs as possible. The winner this year finished with 21. See page 6 and 7 for additional photos.
  • Front.green Screen
    OUT OF THIS WORLD—Elizabeth McFadden and Elise Christle pose in front of the green screen as VolunTeen Noah Gilson makes them appear as though they are standing on the Moon. More photos from the Stair District Library’s NASA @ My Library program are on page 12.
  • Front.fireworks
    FIREWORKS erupt Saturday night over Morenci’s Wakefield Park during the waning hours of the Town and Country Festival. Additional festival photos are inside.
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