Posts filed under ‘Gardening’

How About a Bowl of Roundup for Breakfast?

Monsanto logo via

The last sentence here is the killer:

You probably wouldn’t knowingly eat a substance known to induce death in human cells. But that’s what millions of people are doing every day, even when they’re enjoying foods with “natural” on the label.

Norwegian scientists just published a new study that will appear in the June issue of Food Technology showing high levels of glyphosate—the active weed-killing chemical in Roundup—are turning up in genetically engineered (GE) soy. That herbicide-laced soy winds up in thousands of nonorganic packaged foods and in animal feed for livestock like pigs, cows, chickens, and turkeys.

Why is this happening? Genetically engineered crops are manipulated in a way that could never occur in nature so plants like corn, soy, canola, cotton, and sugar beets can withstand high doses of glyphosate-containing herbicides that would normally kill them. The result? Roundup in food that people and farm animals eat.

As more and more weeds become resistant to glyphosate and GE technology fails, farmers spray heavier glyphosate applications—and more often. Glypshoate is systemic, meaning it’s take up inside of the plant. As nonorganic farmers crank up glyphosate use, the Environmental Protection Agency has been slowly increasing allowable levels of glyphosate in food.


So, Monsanto’s Roundup is doing a number on the planet and, here in the U.S. at least, the so-called Environmental (cough) “Protection” (cough) Agency is enabling them.

The corporations really do run the place.

What a country.

April 27, 2014 at 10:19 AM Leave a comment

Spec. Tacular.

One of our Christmas traditions is to plant an indoor Amaryllis bulb late in November so it will bloom right around Christmas.

When I shop for the bulbs I’m always a little leery that the picture on the little tag won’t turn out to be what the bulb I plant looks like; partly because I think growers tend to embellish and partly because I don’t know if the bulb I picked out was inadvertently put into the wrong bin by a careless, browsing customer.  (I.e., a white flower bulb put back into a red bulb bin.)

This year, everything worked perfectly.  This is the double-flowering “Cherry Nymph” by  The flowers are easily 7″ across.  I was lucky to have two stalks, each with four flowers so the bulb has been blooming for a good two to three weeks.  What a treat.

The orange/red color is just spectacular and in the sun there appear to be sparkles in the petals.

After probably 20 years, this has got to be my favorite:

Amaryllis 12-26-13

Four days from now the buds will begin to fade which is why we love flowers.  They’re fleeting and they force us to appreciate them and soak in their beauty before they’re gone.

Hey, I’m thinkin’ we could learn a thing or two from flowers.

Anyway, gorgeous or what, huh?


December 26, 2013 at 7:10 PM 2 comments

Meet Puya Chilensis, the “Sheep-Eating Plant”

Mother Nature is amazing:

Sheep-Eating Plant via

(Image via the

A South American plant with a 10ft (3m) tall flower spike is about to bloom in a Surrey glasshouse for the first time since it was planted 15 years ago.

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) at Wisley said the Puya chilensis, a native of Chile, would bloom in the next few days and last about a week.

In the Andes it uses its sharp spines to snare and trap sheep and other animals, which slowly starve to death.

The animals then decay at the base of the plant, acting as a fertiliser.

The RHS feeds its specimen on liquid fertiliser.


That’s one brilliant plant.


June 21, 2013 at 2:46 PM 4 comments

Calling all Gardeners — Great Idea for Gardening With Shipping Pallets

It’s break time — time to think about gardening.  Woohoo!

I like most of this idea:   Shipping Pallet Garden Wows Visitors at the Canada Blooms Garden Festival.

Check out the photos (link above).  This is the part of the project I love:

(1)  Turning pallets into a garden wall, like this:

You wouldn’t necessarily have to use this many pallets; you could use one or two.  You could paint them if you wanted or let them weather.  I imagine them used either as a planting platform maybe up against a fence, with potted plants stuck randomly among the slats and/or as a privacy screen, again with plants scattered about.

And (2), I love the look and feel of this “room:”

Again, this could be modified but I can see how using pallets to frame a seating area in a corner of the garden (or even smack dab in the middle) would be so cozy.  Imagine vines growing all over the wood.

I’m going to have to think on this and see if I can figure out how to do something with pallets in my yard.

Really like the look and the possibilities.

March 27, 2012 at 4:00 PM 2 comments

Organic Weed Killer — Calling All Gardeners!

OMG, I am not kidding.  I am so excited about this news:  Looking for a harmless, organic, weed killer that actually works?  Me too, and I have been for literally decades, and there really is one:  Vinegar!

I have a Master Gardener certificate from Colorado State University and I have Never.  Heard.  This.  Kinda goes to show how much the Ortho’s of the world control the information, doesn’t it?

Anyway, yes.  Put regular, full-strength, old-fashioned, white, grocery store-grade vinegar in a spray bottle, spray your weeds and They.  Will.  Die.

Spray on a day when no rain is forecast and preferably on a day when no rain is forecast for the next two or three days.

I learned this info from an acquaintance on Sunday and promptly came home and sprayed an area in our xeriscaped front yard that is covered in cobble but through which hundreds of tiny little weeds were poking their heads. I dreaded getting down there and pulling them out but I refused to use something like Roundup because I care about stuff like ground water, bees, birds and frankly, myself.

Today, 48-hours later, those pesky buggers (along with some mounds of clover) are shriveling up.

I am thrilled and I’m telling everyone I know.

I may need to apply another coat but heck, so what?  I don’t feel the least bit guilty and I don’t imagine cancer instantaneously forming in my body if I accidentally inhale a whiff.

Try it.  It really works!

May 3, 2011 at 2:58 PM 1 comment

Time to Make This Happen Again



Yes I can.  Yes I can…

March 21, 2011 at 10:51 PM Leave a comment

Autumn is Coming!

Love that the Sun’s rays are extending farther and farther into the house as autumn approaches and the Sun moves south.  My sun-loving plants — who’ve been waiting patiently — are loving it too.


August 14, 2010 at 6:04 PM Leave a comment

Older Posts