Felder and Painted Trees and Fairy Rings

Every week I listen to Felder Rushing’s gardening podcast (it’s available here). A couple of weeks ago he mentioned that it’s not too late to plant tomatoes – and one way that Felder plants them this late in the season is just to put them in big buckets – actually some people do that all year long.

It’s not the best-looking-idea-ever, but you know what? We went to Home Depot, bought some ugly orange buckets, Av drilled holes in the bottom of each for drainage, and planted two varieties of tomatoes and a bell pepper. These are in the backyard just behind the kitchen, and I almost feel like I can see the plants growing while I fix supper. Really, they have just taken off, and we’re going to be getting some beautiful tomatoes and peppers by early October, when it is still hot as anything here:

(I know, it is terrible-bad ugly. But still.)

I also figured out by listening to one of Felder’s podcasts that we have a little patch of chinch bugs in the St. Augustine sod in our front yard (would have never figured that out without him – I actually thought that maybe our lawn service had accidentally spilled some Roundup). Really, I learn something new every time I listen to him. This week, he had an idea to plant crimson clover seed over the garden to overwinter, then in the Spring when they have those pretty tops, you till them over and they fertilize the soil. Smart.

On his website, he’s got pictures of something the University of Tennessee in Jackson is doing in their research garden – they’ve got small dead trees in the garden, painted vibrant colors. It doesn’t sound good, but take a look.

Another thing that is so wild is that he has pics of how one man roots muscadine vines – I would have never in a million years thought of this but I guess it makes sense – the pics are on this page.

He talked about fairy rings this week too – you know, how mushrooms grow in big circles? One of my neighbors has one!:

The spider lilies are blooming right now too!

This is one of my other neighbors’ yard with a whole line of them:

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