Let It Grow Organic Gardens

And I resumed the struggle. -Vladimir

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Anise Hyssop, Baked Potatoes, and Carol's Sh*t List

Note: I will use asterisks at appropriate places throughout this post, to make it more family friendly. I apologize to those who may be offended.

It all started about a week ago - it was opening day of fishing season, as I recall - when the big red dump truck rolled up the road. My neighbor Carol and his son got out and motioned me over.
"We got a whole load of sh*t here. We figured Jack could use it. Where do you think he'd want it."
"I'd go up and put it on his front porch," I said.
"That's too much work," Carol said.
"Well, right here on the edge of his walnut field would probably be best," I said. "That's where he usually makes his compost piles. Right upwind of my house."
His son stomped on the ground a bit, and then stomped again. Confident that he wouldn't get stuck, he drove the truck forward, then backed it up, then went forward again, then backed up again.
"You might want to put some of this on your fields," Carol said.
His son had the truck right where he wanted it.
"I could use it. But I don't have a manure spreader. Just a five gallon bucket."
Carol pulled the rear latch and sent his index finger skyward. His son raised the bed and and the load started to slide out.
"A manure spreader," Carol said. "The only tool that Sears won't stand behind."
He said that three more times until I got it.
His son lowered the bed and pulled forward, then backed up and then pulled forward again.
"Well," Carol said. "We'll be right back with another load."
They'd wintered their cattle in a field just up the Creek from me, and had just brought them back to their place. Carol and his son were cleaning up the feeding area - a huge steel ring that hay is dumped into. The cattle can eat the hay but they can't walk all over it. They were scooping up the spilled and dropped hay, all well mixed with cattle droppings, so that grass could grow in that spot.
"We were just gonna dump it in the creek," Carol said. "Then we thought: Hell, those boys could use this sh*t."
They came back about a half an hour later and dumped my load on the opposite side of the road.
I side-dressed the blueberries with it that afternoon. Then, today, decided to side-dress the anise hyssop. (My little anise hyssop stand is getting stronger and stronger each year. This year it is really coming back with verve, and I am inclined to pamper it.)
I used what I call a "rock sled." Not really a sled, it's a flat platform on the back of the tractor. I can lower it and raise it. It's most common use, as you may have eponymously guessed, is to get rocks out of the field. Today I used it to move sh*tty hay. I got uphill of the pile, put the tractor in reverse, built up a little speed, and slammed into the pile. The rock sled sunk in about two feet before the wheels started spinning, and I lifted up what I could and started to take it to the anise hysop. That's when I noticed the steam. Coming out of the pile. At a vigorous rate. I walked over to the pile and held my hand up. It was hot! Very hot. Like, really, really hot.
There's a potato in the middle of it right now, all wrapped up in foil and baking nicely. I don't exactly know that I'm going to eat it; I just want to say that I did it. As for the anise hyssop, it is very happy.


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