Sunday, March 29, 2009



HR 875 The food police, criminalizing organic farming and the backyard gardener, and violation of the 10th amendment
Freeze! Maam... we're here to confiscate your tomatoes!
Friday, March 26, 2009 Health Freedom Alliance

This bill (HR 875 is sitting in committee and I am not sure when it is going to hit the floor. One thing I do know is that very few of the Representatives have read it. As usual they will vote on this based on what someone else is saying. Urge your members to read the legislation and ask for opposition to this devastating legislation. Devastating for everyday folks but great for factory farming ops like Monsanto, ADM, Sodexo and Tyson to name a few.
I have no doubt that this legislation is being heavily influenced by lobbyists from huge food producers. This legislation is so broad that technically someone with a little backyard garden could get fined and have their property seized. It will effect anyone who produces food. Even if they grow for personal consumption. It will literally put many independent farmers and food producers out of business with the huge sums of money it will take to conform to factory farming methods. It will enable them to be very selctive in who they want to harass. And of course the cries injustice will go unheard because its just 'one grower' who will be lambasted in the media as a 'danger' to the community. If people choose to farm without industry standards such as chemical pesticides and fertilizers they will be subject to a variety of harassment from this completely new agency. That's right, a whole new government agency is being created just to police food... for our own protection of course.
The more people who read this legislation the more insight we are going to get and be able to share. Post your observations and insights. Urge your members to read this legislation and to oppose it! ANY FORM OF IT! Find out more and Take Action! Remember it always starts moderate and becomes increasingly draconian...
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Wednesday, March 25, 2009


Lotus. The very name evokes visions of a southeast Asian garden with vines clamoring up tall tropical trees and the lovely Lotus flower rising up above the water reaching for the sun. The round leaves beading up the rainwater as it softly splashes down from the tall canopy above the black reflecting pond.

Every year I start new Lotus plants from seed and this year is no exception. I love to grow them in containers of all kind from the lowly plastic tub to tall urns with an Asian motif painted on the ceramic glazed surface.

Lotus can be grown either from rhizomes or seed. I do both, but I enjoy the thrill of growing from seed the most. It is like giving birth for the first time. It is a wonder and a joy all in one.

Lotus have a rock hard shell of a seed coat and in order to get the seeds to germinate you must nick that seed coat somehow. I prefer to use a stone bit on my Dremel tool as it works the best I have found. It's quick and sure and only take a little practice to get it right.

The whole point of nicking the seed is to expose the pale beige coloring of the cotyledon from which the germination will take place. It is not my intention to give a lesson here. Go to for in-depth instructions on growing Lotus and Water Lilies.

I grow many different colors of Lotus here at the jungle. My favorite I guess, is the large leafed Lotus from southeast Asia. (nucifera) The seed is a bit bigger than the American Lotus and has an oval shape to it. It is not hardy even here in southern Alabama and has to be brought into a heated sun room or greenhouse to over-winter if I want it to flower.

Check out the link in this post and you will get hooked on growing some of the 700 Lotus, too!

Monday, March 09, 2009

Pond Almighty!

It was a beautiful Sunday and Db and I spent the morning and part of the afternoon working outside getting ready for the summer season.
Ornamental grasses were cut down to the ground, swing set was taken down so new chains could be purchased this week, old shutters out of an antebellum home that were sitting out front for a couple weeks were moved into one of the sheds. Exhausting but invigorating day!
Around 3:00 a load of Chad's friends drove in from town for an afternoon of fishing and relaxing. The young men were kind enough to see that our cement table top was on the ground and the umbrella in the woods where a tornado last summer touched down. Way too heavy for us to move without a lot of strong arms.
My big truck tires are filled with compost and should be ready to plant herbs in a few weeks now that the heat is here. I have strawberries in one, potatoes in another, and the other three will be planted with culinary herbs for my recipes.
I hope your Sunday was just as nice! Later gator!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Square Foot Gardening

I am a huge fan of Square Foot Gardening. It just makes so much sense and is lovely to look at, too!

When Mel Bartholomew first came out with his first printing of this book way back when he had me hooked from the start. He also had a show on Square Foot Gardening on PBS if memory serves. Wish I could get copies of those tapes!

In this day and age when being frugal with all of our resources is more important than ever, his system just makes perfect sense. It saves time, labor, water, and does not have to take any fossil fuels in order to re-till it every year. If you combine Mel's theories with the theories in the Lasagna Gardening book, you have a perfect combination for any and all gardeners. It doesn't matter if you are into doing it with the squares as he suggests or if you garden in containers. It's all the same and it will all work together very well.

I highly suggest picking up a copy of both these books. I can guarantee that you will reach for them time and time again in your gardening daze ahead. Want it now? Just click on the link below and it will take you right to the book section. Be sure and let me know how you enjoyed these books by placing a comment on my blog...later gator!

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Yes, It Snowed Sunday

And no, I didn't get any pics of the inch that fell. Was definitely pretty, but was glad it didn't stick around more than a few hours. I am NOT a snow bunny by any stretch of the imagination.

I am getting into high gear with the spring gardens and have been since mid February. Potatoes planted, Strawberries transplanted, green peas, onions, greens, all are underway.

Let's hear what you are planting/doing in your gardens!!!! Leave your info in the comment box below. Later gator..deb