Gardener's Grapevine 2013.03.27

Written by David Green.

Well, here we are again, Sunday afternoon. I’m lounging on the couch writing this and watching Red Neck Comedy tour, the Movie. First of all I didn’t know they made a movie; second, I’m sitting here thinking: if you might be a redneck if you mow your lawn and find a car, would you plant flowers?

I don’t know anyone with a lawn that could hide a car, but if I did why would they plant flowers or a garden if they don’t care about the yard? I’m pretty sure appearances are not going to be a priority, and a flower is not going to survive in a forest of grass anyway.

A few weeks ago I wrote about lawn décor from found or repurposed items. I did not mean refrigerators, cars or living room furniture. Today I saw a yard with a lot of old farm items for décor and it was very nicely done. They had a wagon wheel on each side of the drive and old hand-driven plows with landscaping around them in the yard. It was beautiful as they had a large lot so it did not overwhelm.

I was reading a magazine this week that was talking about unusual items to use for plant containers and they used old galvanized tubs and watering cans that weren’t able to hold water anymore without leakage. It said that if you place it in a garden it won’t matter if water leaks out because the ground will soak it up and it will have great drainage. I thought, what if you wanted it on a deck or porch? Then I thought why not do like I do the hanging baskets and line it with plastic bags that are under the lip so no one sees them: no leakage but all the old look style. If you do this you absolutely have to put some rock or such in the bottom to let the water escape the roots. Plants do not like wet feet.

I also read a new idea to keep invasive plants contained without putting them in above-ground containers. I have read a lot of ideas for this and most do not work, but I think this one might. It said to dig a hole deep enough to bury a five gallon bucket all but the top two inches. Put a five gallon bucket in it and fill in the dirt around it but not all the way to the lip. Fill the bucket with fresh soil and then plant the invasive plant in it.

I forgot to mention it needs to be a below-ground invasive plant like mint. The idea is that the roots can grow down or sideways but only go to the edge of the bucket and no farther. Because of the lip being above the ground it can’t crawl over either. I rather like this idea and will probably give it a try with my mint. If you no longer want the plant you just pull the bucket out and bye-bye plant.

I really like to try other people’s ideas and see if they work. I hope to see some innovative ideas in gardens around town this year.

  • Front.nok Hok
    GAMES DAY—Finn Molitierno (right) celebrates a goal during a game of Nok Hockey with his sister, Kyla. The two tried out a variety of games Saturday at Stair District Library’s annual International Games Day event. One of the activities featured a sort of scavenger hunt in which participants had to locate facts presented in the Smithsonian Hometown Teams exhibit. The traveling show left Morenci’s library Tuesday, wrapping up a series of programs that began Oct. 2. Additional photos are on page 7.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.leaves
    MAPLE leaves show their fall colors in a puddle at Morenci’s Riverside Natural Area. “This was a great year for colors,” said local weather watcher George Isobar. Chilly mornings will give way to seasonable fall temperatures for the next two weeks.
  • Front.band
    MORENCI Marching Band member Brittany Dennis keeps the beat Friday during the half-time show of the Morenci/Pittsford football game. Color guard member Jordan Cordts is at the left. The band performed this season under the direction of Doyle Rodenbeck who served as Morenci’s band director in the 1970s. He’s serving as a substitute during a family leave.
  • 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.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.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016