Going out of business! Never published books must go! First come, first

-- Weeping Woodies by I. Krye
-- Invasive Species by Du Knott Plante
-- Better Fruit Production by Bud N. Graft and S. Palier
-- Simplifying Turf Management by Les Mauer
-- 50 Spectacular Garden Structures You Can Build by Ken E. Mesur
-- Lavish Garden Weddings by Marion Upp
-- Gardening in Deep Shade by Leif E. Woodes
-- Gardens for All by N. E. Wahn
-- Sentimental Flowers by Dewey Eye
-- Secrets of Low Maintenance Gardening by Early Weade
-- Pruning & Training by A. Sharpe Tuel and Wrighte Kutte
-- Meditation Garden Design by Serena Soule
-- How to Choose the Best Landscape Architect by Izzy Goode, Willy Werk and Icahn Pei

-- April Fools by Sally Williams

Sally WIlliams
Editor, Garden Literature Index
EBSCO Publishing

Reprinted with permission


"The 12-Step Program for Gardeners' Anonymous

 A 12-Step program for when we need to throw in the trowel, or is there life after our gardens?

(Disclaimer: Please note that this is not intended to poke fun at AA, but to us addicted gardeners. I have much respect for what AA has done to help a serious problem. DTT. Note I have permission to post this from Debbie Teachout-Teashon, from whom I obtained it in '96).

Here are the steps we take, which are suggested as a program of dragging us out of the garden or at least make us garden in moderation:

    1. We admit we were powerless over our gardens - that our weeds are unmanageable.

    2. Start to believe that a Condominium with no grounds to garden in is greater than ourselves and can restore us to sanity.

    3. Make a decision to move to Antarctica and become one with the penguins. In that move, no grow lights or indoor gardening tools are allowed. The cold turkey method.

    4. Make a searching and fearless moral inventory of what we planted, tilled and ate from the garden. "Was that plant really necessary for our survival?"

    5. Admit to God, to ourselves, and to another green thumb the exact nature of our "just one more plant please, I will hide it behind the compost bin."

    6. We are entirely ready to have Non Gardening Partner grab a weed eater and remove all green material more than 4 inches tall in the garden.

    7. Humbly ask Him/Her to remove our shortcomings. "Oh dear, I killed another plant."

    8. Make a list of all insects we had harmed, and become willing to make amends to them all.

    9. Make direct amends to all the possums, bunnies, deer, and raccoons chased or screened out of the garden wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

    10. Continue to take garden inventory and when we wrongly plant a plant in the wrong zone, we promptly admit it.

    11. Seek out traffic routes that bypass nurseries, and grocery stores with a rack of plants by the door. Call ahead to Walmart, Kmart, etc., for an escort when necessary to shop there. Escort is directed to steer you away from the garden section.

    12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we try to carry this message to fellow gardeners, and to practice these principles in all our garden designs.

Respectfully Submitted, ;-)

Debbie T."


And another from Debbie Teachout-Teashon, with permission:

"10 Signs That Plants Have Taken Over Your Life

1. You think of the plants in your garden as 'friends,' but you forget to send your grandmother a birthday card.

2. You divide your perennials more frequently than you rotate your automobile tires.

3. When you go into a garden center, you eavesdrop on a salesperson talking with customers -- & you butt in to correct him & spend the next twenty minutes answering the customers' questions, while the salesperson stands by silently nodding his head.

4. You use the phrase 'Liriodendron tulipifera' in a conversation without thinking how strange your mouth feels when you say it.

5. You constantly find yourself in groups of people to whom you say the phrase 'Tiarella cordifolia". Everyone understands what you mean, & you are not surprised or disappointed that you don't have to explain it.

6. Your wife asks you to pick up some minipads for her at the store and you return with a dwarf waterlily.

7. On vacation, you are reading 'Manual of the Vascular Flora of the Carolinas" and turning the pages faster than everyone else who is reading John Grisham novels.

8. You have ended friendships because of irreconcilably different opinions about which is better: Cercis canadensis or Cornus florida (what a silly debate! Cercis is better in the sun; Cornus better for shade!)

9. You are so knowledgeable about plants that you feel secure enough to say 'I don't know' when someone asks you a plant question instead of feeling compelled to make something up.

10. Yoiu understand all the jokes on this page. If so, my friend, plants have taken over your life. We suggest, for the good of the planet, that you infect someone else with your addiction. [Life? What life?] "



This has been around Internet for a long time. My version first appeared in the Columbus, Ohio, Dispatch:

This is an imaginary conversation between God and St. Francis:


"Frank, you know all about gardens and nature. What in the world is going on down there in central Ohio (or Idaho)?  What happened to the dandelions, violets, thistle and stuff I started eons ago?  I had a perfect no-maintenance garden plan. Those plants grow in any type of soil, withstand drought and multiply with abandon. The nectar from the long-lasting blossoms attracted butterflies, honey bees and flocks of songbirds. I expected to see a vast garden of colors by now. But all I see are these green rectangles."

"It's The Suburbanites.  They started calling your flowers 'weeds' and went to great extent to kill them and replace them with grass."

"Grass? But it is so boring. It's not colorful.  It doesn't attract butterflies, birds and bees, only grubs and sod worms. It's temperamental with temperatures. Do these Suburbanites really want all that grass growing there?"

"Apparently so, Lord. They go to great pains to grow it and keep it green. They begin each spring by fertilizing grass and poisoning any other plant that crops up in the lawn."

"The spring rains and cool weather probably make grass grow really fast. That must make the Suburbanites happy."

"Apparently not, Lord. As soon as it grows a little, they cut it -- sometimes twice a week."

"They cut it? Do they then bale it like hay?"

"Not exactly, Lord. Most of them rake it up and put it in bags."

"They bag it? WHY? Is it a cash crop?  Do they sell it?"

"No, sir, just the opposite.  They PAY to throw it away."

"Now let me get this straight. They fertilize grass so it will grow.  And when it does grow, they cut it off and pay to throw it away?"

"YES, sir."

"The Suburbanites must be relieved in summer when we cut back on the rain and turn up the heat.  That surely slows the growth and saves them a lot of work."

"You are not gonna believe this, Lord.  When the grass stops growing so fast, they drag out the hoses and pay more money to WATER it so they can continue to mow it and pay to get rid of it."

"What nonsense!  At least they kept some of the trees.  That was a sheer stroke of genius, if I do say so myself. The trees grow leaves in the spring to provide beauty and shade in the summer. In the autumn they fall to the ground and form a natural blanket to keep moisture in the soil and protect the trees and bushes.  Plus they rot,  the leaves for compost to enhance the soil.  It's a natural circle of life."

"You'd better sit down, Lord.  The Suburbanites have drawn a new circle. As soon as the leaves fall, they rake them into great piles and have them hauled away."

"NO! What do they do to protect the shrub and tree roots in the winter and keep the soil moist and loose?"

"After throwing away your leaves, they go out and buy something they call mulch.  They haul it home and spread it around in place of the leaves."

"And where do they get this mulch?"

"They cut down trees and grind them up."

"ENOUGH! I don't want to think about this anymore. Saint Catherine, you're in charge of the arts. What movie have you scheduled for us tonight?"

''Dumb and Dumber,'" Lord.  It's a real stupid movie about..."

"Never mind. I think I just heard."




Super Bowl I                        Feb. 2, 2004

My husband and I are Colorado natives, but before moving to Boise we lived in Michigan (East Lansing and Okemos), Washington (Ellensburg) and California (Riverside).  Chuck is a devoted fan of professional football, especially the Denver Broncos.

The first Super Bowl, or matchup between the NFL and AFL conference winners, was in the Los Angeles Memorial Stadium January 15, 1967.  The game was not a sellout, so television coverage was blocked for all within a certain area (those who could have been paying customers).  Riverside was included in the blocked area, frustrating football fans who could not afford tickets to see it live, including Chuck.

The Riverside newspaper carried an article suggesting fans alter their rooftop antennas to pick up broadcasts from San Diego.  They said one could do that with a pole and some wire coat hangers tacked on the pole. 

Chuck sawed my broom off the handle (leaving me with a broom with a one-inch long handle), and nailed three wire coat hangers onto the handle.  Then he bought a ladder and climbed to the roof.  We were renting a house while looking for one to buy.  The rental had a rooftop antenna, but once he'd climbed up there, he found the antenna wire lay in one-inch pieces across the roof. 

He climbed down and went to Radio Shack to buy new antenna wire.  He affixed it to our television set, then strung the wire out through the hole in the wall, then up to the roof.  He fastened it to the set of wire coat hangers, then began turning the handle, and calling to me "Is there a picture yet?  Is there a picture yet?  Now?"  After ten minutes of that, I figured he'd already turned the broomstick every conceivable way, so I stopped watching the television.  I checked every once in a while, but it was always just snow. 

I laughed at him when he finally gave up and came down the ladder.  "Did you really think that was going to work?"

"I saw men on rooftops all over the neighborhood doing the same thing," he said. 

I'll bet they didn't saw the handles off  brooms...

(I know this isn't gardening, but I'm still amused by it, 37 years later)

Gilbert & Sullivan would love it:

I am the very model of a modern major gardener,
with every pest my enemy and every bloom my partn-er,
I scrutinize the listings in the newest nursery manuals
and thoroughly have trained myself in handling of perennials.
I'm practiced in the use and care of half a hundred garden tools,
I know the mixing ratios for all the two-stroke motor fuels,
I highly value safety and I follow the most stringent rules -
And I never fill my mower until well after the engine cools.

He never fills his mower until well after the engine cools,

He never fills his mower until well after the engine cools,
He never fills his mower until well after the engine, engine cools!


I know my taxonomy from Abutilon to Zinnia;
I know a sickly yucca from a juvenile dracenia;
With every pest my enemy and every bloom my partn-er,
I am the very model of a modern major gardener!


I seize all opportunities for hunting beetles Japanese,
and if I please, on bended knees, I greet the eager honeybees.
Should aphids dare to venture there,
I'll spare no care toward their despair,
but share my garden fair with any mantis gallivanting there!
Of grafting, double-digging and deadheading I know quite a bit,
Whatever you would care to name I'll wager I have planted it.
To purchase fertilizer, I don't buy jut any brand of...manure...
and I'm always careful with my speech and you can count on that for sure!

He is always careful with his speech and you can count on that for sure,

He's always careful with his speech and you can count on that for sure,
always careful with his speech
and you can count on that for, that for sure!


Then I can re-create the hanging gardens of old Babylon,
or grade a level lawn for you to put a picnic table on,
With every pest my enemy and every bloom my partn-er
I am the very model of a modern major gardener.


In fact when I know what is meant by "chloroplast" and "cambium,"
When I can tell at sight mite infestation on geranium,
When black spot, mildews, smuts, rust, scorch and dodder I'm more wary at,
And when I know precisely what is in Lasso and Lariat,
Then I can drape a table with the harvest's flavor subtleties,
Or spread a bed of flowers making color for your eye to see.
In short, when I can please the various senses with such things as these -
You'll say a better Major Garden-er has never stained his knees!


For I've applied my genius to the wond'rous field of Botany
Where I find fascination where most others find monotony,
With every pest my enemy and every bloom my partn-er,
I am the very model of a modern major gardener!

-- Alex Silbajoris, reprinted here by permission