Mar 172023

Terry has gardening fever, and I blame it on our son Travis. I’ve told you before that Travis is an avid and successful gardener, and ever since we first looked at our property here in Alabama he’s been telling us about all the options we have for growing vegetables. That’s something Terry has always wanted to do, but until recently all she could use was her small AeroGarden. Now she’s got acres of space to plant anything she wants, and the two of them have been going over ideas and tips for weeks now.

Travis and his wife Geli are very much back to the land type people, and they do a lot of composting to reduce their footprint on the earth and enhance their growing success. In talking to them, one thing Terry decided she wanted was a worm farm to help consume our kitchen waste compost to make worm castings for her upcoming garden. Worm castings are considered to be one of the best things you can do for a garden, and they are also very good at breaking up soil, including the clay we have here.

I guess all of this was an omen, or maybe it was putting out some kind of gardening vibe, because the other day one of our neighbors stopped by and gave Terry three small fig trees, which seem to grow very well in this area.

We decided to have a day out yesterday, and after stopping off at Travis and Geli’s house to visit for a few minutes and see what they’re up to now, which was planting potatoes, we drove into Tuscaloosa. Our first stop was at Tuscaloosa Tractor Company, where I picked up a set of pallet forks for my Kubota tractor. They will come in handy for a lot of projects around here, including building the backstop for the shooting range.

A short distance away, we went to Johnson’s Garden And Café, an excellent nursery with a huge variety of plants and trees, and an exceptionally friendly and helpful staff. We spent a couple of hours there and Terry found quite a few things that had to come home with us, including some blueberry bushes, a couple of apple trees, a nectarine tree, along with lavender, sage, rosemary, and chive plants. I’m sure this is a business we’re going to be spending a lot of time at. I was pleasantly surprised when they asked if I was a veteran, and when I replied that I was, they gave us a 15% discount on our purchase.

By then it was getting about time to eat, so we stopped at the Shrimp Basket on McFarland Boulevard. We first became acquainted with these small seafood restaurants when we were down on the Alabama Gulf Coast during our fulltime RVing days and we always enjoyed going back to them. This one was just as good, and it’s being added to our list of local favorites.

When we left there, we stopped at Tractor Supply because Terry’s green thumb was still itchy. We hit the jackpot there, buying seed potatoes, rhubarb, asparagus, strawberry, and blackberry seedlings, along with two peach trees. I think we’ve got enough to get her started with an excellent garden, along with some trees that will provide fruit in the years to come.

We also made a stop at Publix and Walmart on the way home to pick up a few things we needed, and by the time we got back to the house it was well after dark. Since we have a 100% chance of rain today, along with nighttime freezing temperatures through Sunday, all of the garden items went into the garage for now.

While we were gone UPS delivered several packages, and once the pickup was unloaded I went out on the front porch to bring them in. I left the door open while I brought the first ones inside, and when I turned around to get the other package a small raccoon was standing in the doorway peering around. I guess he was curious and wanted to see who the new neighbors are. I explained to him that he needed to go away, and after checking me out for a few seconds he decided that was a good idea and turned around and scampered out of sight. Country living at its best!

Be sure to enter our latest Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an audiobook of Big Lake, my first novel and the first book in my Big Lake small town mystery series. This is the book that started me on my career as an author.

To enter, click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name (first and last) in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening. Note: Due to the high shipping cost of printed books and Amazon restrictions on e-books and audiobooks to foreign countries, only entries with US addresses and e-mail addresses are allowed.

And finally, here’s a chuckle to start your day from the collection of funny signs we see in our travels and that our readers share with us.

Thought For The Day – Never put off until tomorrow what you don’t have to do at all.

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  5 Responses to “She’s Got The Fever”

  1. Share this with Terry… Way back in about 1973 I produced a video “Telebrary” series for senior citizens that were circulated through public libraries. The most memorable program was “WORM FARMING FOR FUN AND PROFIT” !!! 😱 Oh, how passionate my interviewee was about his “hobby”. He insisted I not refer to it as a “business” because his backyard was not zoned properly and he didn’t have a “business permit”. He was also worried about the IRS learning about his unclaimed income. I did get to see his garage refrigerator full of happy mason jar worms. 😬

  2. It is good so see someone who appreciates rhubarb. Growing up in Iowa, rhubarb pie was my greatest pleasure. Living the past 50 years here in Arizona and 10 in Arkansas I have been completely at odds that all I can get is Strawberry/Rhubarb pie. In Arkansas there was a pie shop but it went out of business soon after we discovered it. Even here in Arizona, we can get pies but still whey don’t offer my favorite. I like strawberries but they make pies too sweet for my taste. Another favorite growing up was mince meat pie. Since no one used suet anymore I can get neither mince meat pies nor suet pudding with lemon sauce. Good luck on Terries (and I guess I should include, your since you will be doing a lot of the work,) garden.

  3. Our daughter has been raising worms in a container under their bed. I thought it was her husbands idea….wrong it was all her!

  4. Oh, the deer are going to LOVE those new trees. BTW, my daughter uses two strands of electric fence at 2 ft and 4 ft to discourage the deer from her garden. It seems to work. She had to put a fence about 4 ft away around her fruit trees to keep them from munching.

  5. Our friend, a deputy sheriff, was glad to explain to the panicked new rural, previously city resident, homeowner that raccoons are good because they keep the skunks away.

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