Saturday, August 28, 2021


All it (motivation) takes is the arrival of a large dumpster delivered to your side yard by your local disposal company.  At the request of a family member, I might add.  But that's another story.

I live on 2 acres so there has been ample space  during the past 30 years to "save" in case we might need it.  Who knows when you may need dozens of cut off pieces of PVC pipe ranging from 4 inches in length to 12 inches?

Moving on---the dumpster arrived and the family went to work carting half rotten plywood scraps, short pieces of 2 x 4"s, the PVC pieces, a pair of sawhorses that had been scheduled for repair 10 years ago, a wooden step ladder I was going to use for garden art many years ago.  Eventually the dumpster was filled to the brim.  

What a release it was.  However, my family has now created a Dumpster Monster who is almost ready to dump anything that isn't nailed down.  I've got the fever and am ready to dump.  I have always

recycled as much as possible and I will still move forward with that philosophy.  However there is so much  accumulated stuff from over the years that can't be recycled, some because of restrictions, some because  "make do, or do without" is no longer a household golden rule.

Now that the "boneyard" is cleaned up under the massive juniper tree across the ditch, I have to start on my passion of saving gardening magazines.  

I subscribe to four gardening magazines with the justification of needing them for continued research information.  The plain truth is I love the beautiful photography, the wisdom of the garden gurus, the pictorial visits to botanical gardens, plus the new research developments from non-commercial sources.

The new plan for my new life is to have breakfast every morning with one magazine from the stash.  I peruse the pages one last time removing anything that seems of value and then take the magazine directly to the recycle basket.  Before the end of the day I will give a second look to what was saved asking the question, "Does this REALLY apply to Central Oregon"?  The answer usually results in tossing several of the items.  

The process of purging and tossing is very therapeutic.

The next chapter will be the pleasure of sharing what is appropriate, either in the blog or the basis of an article for the scheduled newspaper articles. 

A good example of why it's important to have a second read of what I saved involves a tip regarding wine corks.

The tip was to save the wine corks and put them in a mesh produce bag.  When planting a large container in the spring you use the bag of corks for a lightweight filler.  At the end of the season, you hose off the dirt and save for next year.  Another tip was to use the corks as a top dressing mulch in a container.  Although the tips sounded reasonable in the beginning, I became more skeptical the more I thought about them.

I have been told that wine corks for the most part nowadays, are man made, not natural.  How do they make them?  What chemicals could leach into the soil, the root system?   Needless to say, that tip went into the recycle basket.

Perhaps the years of "research-based" master gardener training makes Master Gardeners more skeptical.  We are more comfortable with facts, not cutesy window dressings.  The moral is if you come across a tip think twice before implementing it.  Think WWMGD--What would Master Gardeners do?

Mark your calendar for the next Gardening: Get Good at It "Roses in Central Oregon" segment on Tues. August 31 on KPOV 88.9 FM between 9-9:30 a.m. 

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