Gardener's Grapevine 2012.11.14

Written by David Green.

This week as we move closer to Thanksgiving, let’s think of everything in our lives we have to be thankful for.

We still live in a great country with the ability to free think. I am especially thankful that one of my family members made it through a major and serious surgical procedure last week. I am thankful for all the vegetables that were plentiful to my family this summer and are put up in the pantry for winter. I am also thankful for all the people who tell me they enjoy this column. I’d like to say thank you for the support.

With all the things in my life I am thankful for, let’s talk this week about preparing for your day of thankfulness. Most people prepare a big meal or share in one. If you are the gardener in the family or just someone who enjoys a nice centerpiece, it is easy and very inexpensive to make one on your own. I know many of you are saying, “No way, I can’t do that.”

To begin, think about what you have on hand. Do you have candles, a large bowl or a favorite fall figurine? Just about anything can be worked in. Take a tour around your yard to see what you have left such as ornamental grass, sticks, holly bush cuttings, pine cones, thistles, cattails, evergreen trimmed from a tree.

Here are a few ideas:

Take a large bowl, put a pillar candle or candle stick with a tall taper in the middle, fill around the candle with pine cones.

Use a tall vase, a globe from a candle holder or any tall object that can hold something upright and put whatever you are using in the upright container, and mix it up anyway you want. Tie a wire-edged ribbon around the container in a bow. 

Another quick option is to lay some evergreen boughs in the center of the table, tuck pillar candles (they can be different heights) into the boughs randomly and add some pine cones or holly clippings randomly. If you like and can tie basic ribbon bows, tuck some in wherever it suits you.

See even the folks working in a flower shop are putting together what they have as their idea of an attractive arrangement. You have the advantage when it is for your own table in that you don’t have to make it so anyone can carry or transport it. Once you have it like you want, set the table and enjoy. What have you got to lose in trying? You can always ditch it and start over or purchase something. Using what is available keeps you “green” and is a reminder to everyone to be thankful for all you have been given. Appreciating family friends and blessings keeps all of us humble.

  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • 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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