Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Transplanting With My Black Thumb

I went outside yesterday to discover I was very lonely.  All those plants I talk to in the morning were back home at the Chance residence.  All those that lived anyway.  Maybe I could get a few of my own.  Maybe I could just transplant a few to the garden.

Speaking of the heat, a thread that seems to be running through all my posts, I was tired of watching the Giants baseball team lose, so I decided it wasn't all that hot after all and grabbed my shovel for a little planting.

It was 2:00 in the afternoon and 95 degrees as I slugged down the first bottle of water.  Out into the wilderness I trod, looking for the perfect garden piece.  I picked a beauty and started to dig.  Definitely not as easy as I had imagined.  

Okay, forget that one, it's not coming out.  I looked for a smaller one.  Good grief Charlie Brown, these guys just don't want to come visit with me.  Finally, I found the tiniest piece of flora and dug it up, only to find it had a root two inches around and ten inches long.

Surprisingly, these desert yucca have a rhizome (I think that's what you call it), kind of like my plants at home.  A huge root grows underground, shooting up little plants called pups.   Finally .... success.  That's one.  I scouted around for two more, even smaller ones.
I quickly realized I was too hot.  I already run hotter than most due to a short session of heat stroke many moons ago.  While watching a ballgame, I became rather sick, so I walked upstairs to the shade and sat down.  Instantly, I felt better.  Too bad I didn't express that because someone called the cops on me.

In a flash, I was practically handcuffed as they hauled me off to the medic room jail.  WAIT ... I'm FINE!!  Nope ... they plopped me down on a bench and threw a bag of ice on my neck.  "You're not going anywhere".  While I have to admit the ice felt good, I really thought I was taking up space from someone who might REALLY be sick.  They refused to let me go.

Ten minutes later when the medics back was turned, I initiated a jail break and disappeared into the crowd.  I'm pretty sure that's why I run a little hot, so I'm always careful.  Back at the house after my hunting expedition, I drank another bottle of water.

Then I began the dig.  I instantly became aware of how the adobe houses remain intact after so many years.  This stuff truly is like concrete.  I scratched around the surface, then dumped water in the hole to soften the dirt.  Eventually I was able to dig down far enough to get three little plants in place.  

I don't know if they will survive or not, but at least I gave it a shot.  They tell me anything will grow if you give it water.  I drank two more bottles as I surveyed my handiwork.

When I finally looked up, I was met with this crazy cloud formation.  What do you see?  First I thought it looked like a mushroom cloud ... then I spotted a duck with a crazy eye and wild hair.  Although the forecast was for sunny and hot skies, it has changed to rain on and off every day all week.  YAY ... we like the rain!!
NOW would be a good time to plant a few more cactus in my yard, but the thrift stores are calling my name.  Jessie needs an ottoman at the foot of my bed so she won't hurt herself getting down.  Luckily, it's right on the way to Civano Nursery full of magnificent plants and hopefully a hummingbird feeder since mine has decided to leak out it's contents all over the patio ... three times now.  

Tomorrow .... Food Truck Feast


  1. After years of working under Extreme Heat Conditions I was surprised how being in the direct Sunlight is more dangerous with lower temperatures. Heat Stroke can be deadly and drinking lots of water doesn't always help.
    Be Careful working in the Sun but Enjoy creating your garden.

    It's about time.

    1. Yep. I've spent some time in Tucson & found this out about direct sun. Shade is essential for comfort *&* health in that part of the country.

      I'm thinking Nancy K should get one of those hands-free reflective umbrellas that attach to a strap that thru-hikers use & wear it working in her yard. Hats can *trap* heat. Parasols allow for better air circulation around your brain.

      [And it's a twofer: she could yank it off the strap & use it to beat the $%^# out of those monster spiders she has running around everywhere.]

    2. You are right Rick ... I drank the entire time I was at the ballgame and it didn't really help.

    3. Leilani ... you're too funny. That's EXACTLY what I would do with the strap! Some kind of head wear is probably a really good idea.

  2. My hummingbird feeder leaks too. Can't figure out how to correct it.

    1. A little bit wouldn't be bad Jan, but overnight it empties out completely. I bought a new one. I think the way it was made the heat expanded the plastic around the neck of the bottle.

  3. Nice that you know the signs of heat stroke and lots of water is about the best you can do, and relax in the shade to cool down.
    More rain for your plants sure will help them take root.

    1. I'm thinking I need to limit my time in the sun. Wintertime should be better!

  4. OK cactus plants, they send a taproot down quite deep and it makes him very hard to dig up as you well know ,, the trick is take a stick and drive it in the ground next to the cactus about 3ft away take 2 gallons of water every day for three days and dump it on an around the base of the cactus that's how you loosen the ground around them, the stick is so you can find it again
    As for heat stroke I know this is going too sounds funny
    Take your Garden hose with the sprayer and your lounge chair
    Go sit out in the grass , spray the water straight up and let it come down like it's raining be careful because the water might be HOT at first
    I think you're far back enough that the neighbors won't see you an call u the crazy lady
    About 65% of your perspiration is wicked away do 2 evaporation
    What you sweat out is just trying to keep your skin cool
    Take 5 1 dollar bills fold them in half and put those in your back pocket or your front pocket where you go off shopping and come back take the five bills out, they'll be sopping wet if you have change in your pocket pennies nickels and dimes they'll turn colors due to the perspiration,
    We learned long time ago and never leave your wallet in your back pocket
    If you're going to go look for cactus to dig up try about 530- 6 o'clock in the morning
    Bring your sticks so you can find it again later, and then come back after 6 PM

    1. Aha!! I never thought of using water to dig it OUT, only to dig the hole to plant it. Great idea!! Obviously I was in the sun too long. I'll be MUCH more careful. I do know about the pocket sweat ... those Bingo ladies keep their money in their bra, so we refuse to take it. YUCK!!!

  5. A caliche bar will help with digging in that dirt.

    1. You are right Allison. My dad had one in the old days because we had hardpan. I was thinking about that while I was digging, but didn't think they had them around here. I'll ask around.

  6. Definitely a hat, Nancy! You must have a cowboy hat around that beautiful home somewhere! :)
    You are determined, I'll give you that! I hope the little guys take root after all that hard work.
    I was thinking Diana Ross in the clouds with all that hair.

    1. Probably more stubborn than determined, Patsy! I agree ... Diana Ross!! LOL