Greatest Tool Ever

Done with the work-work and now am going to spend the afternoon venting my authoritarian impulses on the yard. I figure politicians don’t listen to me, you all don’t listen to me, my friends and family don’t listen to me, my animals, whose continued existence relies upon my generosity and good will, don’t listen to me and actually actively defy me at every opportunity, so all I have left is my yard, and I am going to go impose my will on it for the better part of the afternoon.

Not to mention I am now heavily armed with this implement of destuction:

How awesome is that! You won’t even hear the dandelions scream, it will be that quick.








Another Open Thread

Last one was getting clogged with all sorts of suggestions.

I forgot to mention, I finally broke down and picked up one of those topsy turvy tomato growers. We’ll see how that works out.








Open Thread

Apparently I was targeted this week by the global dandelion jihad, and they successfully ran attacks all over my property without my noticing. I’ve been running clear and hold missions for the last hour or so, but I may have to venture into my neighbors yard, because I can tell the dandelion jiahd is being given safe harbor there.

At any rate, is there any way to handle this between the two obvious solutions: digging every damned one of them up or spraying poison all over the damned place? I don’t like either option.

Also, got Tunch’s bird feeder set up. Waiting for the birds to notice it.








Early Morning Open Thread

Sometimes the only way to win is not to play…

Also, after reading this article, I spent twenty minutes racking my aging brain to recall the name of a 1970s sci-fi “classic”:

When it was built three years ago, the company’s first 24-acre greenhouse in Madison was already the largest building in Maine. This second connected greenhouse, completed last year, brought the total area under glass to some 42 acres, or roughly the size of 32 football fields. Even in the depths of winter, a million tomatoes ripen indoors to harvest each week, snipped from their vines by workers in T-shirts and shorts.
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“It’s medium sized,” said Tim de Kok, one of the company’s head growers. At his last job, Mr. de Kok managed a 40-acre chunk of a 318-acre monster in Arizona. The center of Canada’s greenhouse industry, the area around Leamington, Ontario, has some 1,600 covered acres, roughly equivalent to putting Manhattan, south of Houston Street, under glass.
[…]
“In the U.S., it’s hard to be competitive without a 20-acre minimum block,” Ms. Cook said.
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The plants here at Backyard Farms number about 550,000. Each consists of two plants — the vines of new varieties, constantly tweaked for flavor, color, freshness and myriad other traits; and the roots of another, grafted together at a thickly scarred “V” near the base.
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One half grows down into a sterile dirt-substitute made from fibers spun out of volcanic basalt, absorbing a custom hydroponic cocktail mixed by Mr. de Kok. The other half stretches toward the glass ceiling, growing a foot every week along a nine-foot length of twine. When the plants reach the top, workers reel more twine from the spool, shift the entire row horizontally and band each vine to its neighbor so that by the end of a plant’s life it might grow parallel to the concrete floor for as many as 20 or 30 feet, a dozen vines tangled together like garden hoses, before each makes its own graceful turn upward.
[…]
And while no one would mistake a Backyard Beauty for a tomato picked from a backyard in late summer — it is not as tender and its flavor is not as complex — it is juicier and has much more flavor than what you’d find in your deli sandwich.
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“They don’t make a tomato that my grandmother would have liked,” Mr. Papadopoulos said. “They make a tomato that my son would like or my daughter would like.”

Of course, it also reminded me that I haven’t yet ordered either the elite gourmet boutique tomato seedlings or the grow-light kit that would let me start seeds in a household with two south-facing sunny windows and three cats.

Anybody else planning their summer gardens — or even starting them yet?








Gardening Question

Along one of the areas I walk Lily is a patch of wild mint (and before the jokes start, no, “wild mint” is not code for marijuana) that I want to transplant. It is some of the strongest stuff I have ever smelled or tasted- a deep, rich green leaf with so much oil that just touching it and your hands smell like mint for hours. Far stronger than any of the stuff I grew in my herb garden and far better than anything you can get in the store. I just love it in my tea, and pick a little every time I walk by it.

At any rate, how would I go about transplanting it? Can plants get “soil shock” or whatever it is called if you move them from one soil to another (like fish when you move them to new aquariums)? I know my dad used to be able to grow things in a vase of water and replant them, but I never figured out the specifics. Or am I over-thinking this and I should just dig it up and throw it in the ground where I want it?