Gardener's Grapevine 2012.09.26

Written by David Green.

Saturday afternoon finds me sitting at the kitchen counter looking out the window wondering if God just wants his landscaping a mess—it’s hailing. Who ordered this mess? I went to the Garden Club fund raiser and picked up my mums. If you didn’t buy any, boy did you miss some nice ones. They were huge, inexpensive and very hardy. We sold all of them. To all who supported our efforts, thanks. When you look at the flowers around our fair town you can think, I did part of that.

​After the sale, my friend Mary Johnson and I headed out to Pennington’s orchard for some fall goodies. Their prices are very reasonable and they sell the best cider around. Mr. Pennington has been pressing cider his whole life and his family pressed it before him. To say they have it perfected is not over embellishing. The cider this year is extremely sweet. I think it’s due to the drought making more sugar in the apples. The orchard shop is just off 20 going toward Toledo outside of Oakshade on County Road 14. If you’re lucky, maybe Mr. Pennington will be around and tell you about making cider.

​I was looking the vegetable garden situation over and have decided I need to do a little research on squash. Most people grow squash like weeds and I can’t seem to get more than a few each year. It’s kind of discouraging. I’m going to make it my goal to test my soil and do a little reading on what grows great pumpkins and other squash. Maybe my soil is too rich or too lacking in something. I compost constantly so who knows.  Peppers seem to like it, I’ve had an enormous pepper crop this year. The tomatoes don’t voice much complaint either, just the squash. Maybe it didn’t like its neighbors. I planted it by the lima beans and a rose bush and the raspberry patch. I will find out as it puzzles me.  

​The leaf bird baths I told you about last week turned out crazy nice. I really like mine and woohoo another thing to drag out in the spring. I’m sure Art is thrilled. It was a really nifty and easy craft.

While we were at the meeting making the bird baths we viewed the hostess Becky Schermerhorn’s gardens. She has lovely property and she has had the most adorable little group of fairy people come to live there. They have a small community. It reminded me of the book “The Littles” from when we were kids about a family of tiny people. This fairy community has made quite a charming little spot for themselves. Becky’s husband said they are a quiet bunch and Becky does most of the interacting with them.

Becky is a very artistic lady and I can see why they chose to live at her house. I hear fairies are a very choosey little bunch. They also don’t like to discuss their cousins to the north, the Ann Arbor fairies. They are too noisy what with all the Go Blue going on in the fall. (For those of you who don’t have a clue what I’m talking about, Google the Ann Arbor fairy doors.) it is my wish that a group of fairies come set up community in my yard, but I think the dog is a big deterrent.

  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.base Ball
    UMPIRE Thomas Henthorn tosses the bat between team captains Mikayla Price and Chuck Piskoti of Flint’s Lumber City Base Ball Club. Following the 1860 rules, after the bat was grabbed by the captains, captains’ hands advanced to the top of the bat—one hand on top of the other. The captain whose hand ended up on top decided who would bat first. Additional photos of Sunday’s game appear on page 12 of this week’s Observer. The contest was organized in conjunction with Stair District Library’s Hometown Teams exhibit that runs through Nov. 20.
    VALUE OF ATHLETICS—Morenci graduate John Bancroft (center) takes a turn at the microphone during a chat session at the opening of the Hometown Teams exhibit at Stair District Library. Clockwise to his left is John Dillon, Jed Hall, Jim Bauer, Joe Farquhar, George Hollstein, George Vereecke and Mike McDowell. Thomas Henthorn (at the podium) kicked off the conversation. Henthorn, a University of Michigan–Flint professor, will return to Morenci this Sunday to lead a game of vintage base ball at the school softball field.
  • Front.cross
    HUDSON RUNNER Jacob Morgan looks toward the top of the hill with dismay during the tough finish at Harrison Lake State Park. Fayette runner Jacob Garrow focuses on the summit, also, during the Eagle Invitational cross country run Saturday morning. Continuing rain and drizzle made the course even more challenging. Results of the race are in this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.
  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.

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