Always, I have suspected that the squirrels were responsible for my persimmons disappearing from the tree before the fruit ripened.
However, it didn’t make sense because an unripe persimmon is bitter and astringent. That means it causes soft organic tissues to contract. In other words, Momma washing your mouth out with soap can’t compare to a green persimmon turning your mouth inside out. That being the case, you can understand why I questioned the possibility of squirrels raiding my persimmon tree. As I’ve seen them around the yard feasting on other edibles, none of them appear to have a stainless steel mouth.
I had a bumper crop of persimmons this year and I asked my brother, known here as Bubba, to fashion a prop that would help support the tree. The weight of all those persimmons had caused the branches to drop down to the ground. I reasoned that a prop would raise the branches off the ground making a persimmon raid a greater challenge for the squirrels or whatever critter was stealing me blind.
Bubba quickly built a prop from boards he found in Poppie’s garage.
persimmon tree prop
A few days later, I happened to be staring out my bedroom window, for no particular reason, and caught a squirrel jumping up onto one of the lower limbs, extracting a persimmon from my tree, and scampering off with it. Now it was fact rather than suspicion.
Zorro has been no help with the squirrels.
Zorro in the liriope
This photo of Zorro was taken July 30th. I chose not to show the other half of him because his seal point color is coming in here-and-there. Poor thing has two dark patches on each hip. You should see his feet! If they get any bigger, he’ll be able to wear my shoes. It’s tempting to take a ruler to his clodhoppers but I don’t want to give him a complex.
Young and energetic, Zorro hides in that liriope and chases anything that moves. Anything. Most of the lizards around here have stubby tails and the odd snake or two fares no better. Just last week, he pestered a Black Racer snake so bad that the snake looked like a cartoon character with an overly wide open mouth aimed at striking Zorro. But chase a squirrel? I have seen Zorro chase one squirrel. Useless cat.
I suppose the best I can hope for is a bunch of squirrels with their mouth turned inside out!
Posted in Critters, Humor, Tickle Thy Funny Bone | Tagged green persimmons, squirrels eating persimmons | 16 Comments »
Meta is a long-time follower of my blog and we finally met in the sizzling heat of early July 2014. After her visit, I shared her wonderful idea of using clay pots to make a border for a pathway.
Even before meeting her I had shared her garden with a decorative fence built by her son.
More recently, I shared her lion’s tail growing in the compost pile. I now want to show you a few more of her tricks.
You’ve seen gardeners who paint an old wheelbarrow, fill it with showy flowers and roll it out to the front yard. Meta prefers to hide her old wheelbarrows in the back yard as plant nurseries. When two of her wheelbarrows rusted through, she painted one yellow and one green and her son put them on building blocks for height to save her gardener’s back.
For several years now, she has found the rusty holes in the wheelbarrow bed make them perfect for growing seeds, cuttings and seedlings. In the green wheelbarrow, most of those stringy plants are not green beans but future amaryllis bulbs. I gave her the seeds from my plants when she visited in 2014. She had absolutely no faith that those papery black seeds would sprout into anything so she put the seeds in pots and forgot about them. To her surprise, they sprouted and she sent me a photo. I suggested she put them in larger pots where the bulbs could easily grow larger and into the wheelbarrow nursery they went. As you can see, she stuck some flowers in to give the plantings some color for her photo. We gals just need to make things purty.
Photo credit – Meta
According to Meta, the reddish/orange wheelbarrow in this next photo was given to her when a friend moved away. Look at the tires on it! She was hoping that leaving water in the wheelbarrow would help it rust some drainage holes for a new plant nursery but it hasn’t happened yet. Her son may need to help it along with a drill.
Photo credit: Meta
Meta’s next idea is up there with the clay pot border for originality. I have never known of a gardener who recycled old metal shelves from the garage into a plant nursery by turning it on its side and filling it with soil. I can’t tell what that is on the front that she’s using to hold the soil in. I’m sure she’ll tell us in the Comments.
Photo credit: Meta
Here’s the other end showing wooden stakes that are holding the shelves in place in the yard.
Photo credit: Meta
Isn’t Meta a genius of a recycler?
Posted in Garden Tips, News You Can Use | Tagged old shelves recycled as planters, wheelbarrow nurseries | 12 Comments »
If you are a resident of Jacksonville, Florida, this post is for you. The Mandarin Garden Club is holding their Fall clothing extravaganza where you will find an amazing assortment of gently used clothing for everyone – men, women and children — all for a dollar an item. You will find business suits, casual, dressy, formal, workout clothing, plus sizes and more.
Beat the crowds, come early! As many as 500 enthusiastic shoppers attend this event. If you can’t make this one, the next one is in Spring 2016.
Mandarin Garden Club
2892 Loretto Road (off San Jose Boulevard) on the left-hand side of Loretto
Friday, August 7 and Saturday, August 8, 9-2 p.m.
Posted in Frugal, Mandarin Garden Club | 8 Comments »
The Duval Extension Office (Jacksonville, FL) has some upcoming classes on growing a fall vegetable garden.
Plant cabbage in your fall garden
August 1, Saturday – “Midsummer Vegetable Gardening and Preparing for Fall.” No charge for the program. It will be held at Pablo Creek Regional Library, 13295 Beach Boulevard from 10:30 a.m. until noon. Call Jeannie at 255-7450 to register.
My seed tray from a spring class
August 22, Saturday — “How to Start Vegetables from Seed and Take Home Your Own Seed Tray.” The class is $15 and includes a soil-filled seed tray, labels and seed. It will be held at 1010 N. McDuff Avenue from 9 a.m. until noon. The seeds you will be given are broccoli, beets, cabbage, carrots, collards, greens, kale, lettuce, snow pea, swiss chard, and radish. Plus all the information you need to successfully grow your seedlings. A variety of tomato seedlings for your fall garden will also be available for purchase. Pre-registration and pre-payment is required as they have a fixed number of trays and seed. Please call Jeannie at 255-7450 to register. Make checks payable to DCOHAC and mail to Attention: Seed Class, 1010 N. McDuff Avenue, Jacksonville, FL 32254.
Don’t wait too long to sign up for these classes.
Posted in Jax Locals, Veggies | Tagged Duval County Extension Office | 4 Comments »
Pink and White Vinca
Purchased this spring from Lowes
Hope this produces seeds
Coneflowers grown from seed
Finally have enough of them for a decent grouping
Hibiscus/Mallow grown from ‘Luna Swirl’ (pink and white) seed
Dave’s Garden says plants will not come true from seed
It did the first year but not this year
Posted in Flowers | Tagged 'Luna Swirl' Hibiscus, Coneflower, pink and white Vinca | 10 Comments »
Everyone who sets foot on my covered porch feels compelled to tell me that I have wasps nesting on my aluminum porch cover. They are usually shocked to discover that I allow the wasps to return, year after year, because they are pollinators. Don’t believe me? Will you take the feds word for it? Then look here:
approximately 2.5 inches in diameter on porch roof
Their general reaction is, “Not on my porch!” I assure them that they can sit with me in one of my rocking chairs and not be bothered by the wasps. The wasps will fly around but as long as you don’t swat at them they will leave you alone.
This one in the door jamb of my front porch will eventually be dispatched because I don’t like them getting in the house. Again, they won’t bother me in my house but they always end up in the guest bath toilet and are hard to flush.
New wasp nest in front door jamb
The bees who visit are more problematical. They aren’t honey or bumble bees and they don’t bother me but they do crawl around in the cat food bowls. Zorro, who is now a year old, will attack anything that moves. He swatted at one of those bees in his bowl the other day and got stung. If that bee had a nest on my porch, I would likely dispatch him for harming my baby kitty but I don’t know the nest location. I was sitting in one of my rocking chairs yesterday and watched one come in for a landing on a cat food bowl. The next thing it did I wouldn’t have believed but for seeing it with my own eyes. It scooped up one of the dry cat food crumbs and flew off with it! Who knew that bees like dry cat food?
Posted in Critters | Tagged bees eating cat food, wasps as pollinators | 11 Comments »