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LA47
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

I have a friend that lives not far from me. She doesn't gow any vegetables but does have flower beds. She works so hard on them but seems to battle more weeds and bugs than I have ever had! I can't figure it out.
High Altitude Gardener zone 4B or 5A

gumbo2176
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

I have friends and family like that. No matter how much I try to encourage them to give gardening a shot, they claim they just don't have the time, want to make the effort, know nothing about it, etc. The excuses come fast and furious-----------but they all say that the things they are given from my garden taste sooooo much better than store bought produce. I guess it's all good when someone else makes the effort. :lol: :lol:

On the other end of the spectrum, I have a good friend that lives on several acres in rural Mississippi and I convinced him to make a vegetable garden. The first year he did, he asked me over for some advice since he was having issues. I was completely taken aback when I arrived at his place and saw he had at least a quarter acre plot going. He was getting overwhelmed by weeds, watering, crop failures, bad production etc. I advised him to tone it down considerably in size, use mulches to help with weeds and moisture retention, use his fence line to grow things like cucumbers & pole beans, companion plant things like chard between tomato plants to help shade it when it got hot, etc. I now have a convert with a nice garden, especially in the fall when the weather down our way is better suited to working a garden.

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RamonaGS
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

Gumbo, That sounds exactly like something my brother would do, LOL!
~~Ramona mother of fur babies~~

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Cola82
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

As a person whose mother always claimed to have a Black Thumb, I just kind of assumed I always did, too. Now I have my boyfriend's mother--who somehow manages to work full time and help raise her grand daughter and still have a massive property brimming with beautiful trees, flowers, herbs, and vegetables--telling me I have "the touch." Mostly this is because I got some hydrangea cuttings to root, which she's never done before. But honestly, I just never tried. Also, I have the benefit of the Internet to fill in all the gaps in my knowledge. There's still trial and error, but I can anticipate most of the issues before they become a problem.

Without a lot of experience, not enough time to devote to research, and not a lot of financial resources, failure is extremely discouraging. It doesn't seem so much "trail and error" as "I don't have time to keep going back to the gardening supply store for new plants and putting them in pots if they're just going to keep dying." So, if Black Thumbs really are a thing, they're probably a combination of low experience and zero confidence. It's easier to chalk it up to a lack of skill.

That said, my boyfriend is completely useless around the house. He has no coordination and his spatial reasoning is terrible, so I do all of the handy man stuff, like fixing lights and assembling furniture. I've watched him cut cakes and casseroles with his wrist at a weird angle and his fingers mostly rigid so that the utensil is always slipping out of his hand and I just cringe. I also can't handle watching him pack bags at the store, because he mostly just awkwardly paws things into place. He is 100% useless with a screwdriver. It's a good thing his profession doesn't call for any manual dexterity, because he would get himself killed working in a factory. He's plenty intelligent, but he's also all thumbs and left feet. So, that's my anecdotal evidence that some people just aren't good at some things.

gumbo2176
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

Cola82 wrote:As a person whose mother always claimed to have a Black Thumb, I just kind of assumed I always did, too. Now I have my boyfriend's mother--who somehow manages to work full time and help raise her grand daughter and still have a massive property brimming with beautiful trees, flowers, herbs, and vegetables--telling me I have "the touch." Mostly this is because I got some hydrangea cuttings to root, which she's never done before. But honestly, I just never tried. Also, I have the benefit of the Internet to fill in all the gaps in my knowledge. There's still trial and error, but I can anticipate most of the issues before they become a problem.

Without a lot of experience, not enough time to devote to research, and not a lot of financial resources, failure is extremely discouraging. It doesn't seem so much "trail and error" as "I don't have time to keep going back to the gardening supply store for new plants and putting them in pots if they're just going to keep dying." So, if Black Thumbs really are a thing, they're probably a combination of low experience and zero confidence. It's easier to chalk it up to a lack of skill.

That said, my boyfriend is completely useless around the house. He has no coordination and his spatial reasoning is terrible, so I do all of the handy man stuff, like fixing lights and assembling furniture. I've watched him cut cakes and casseroles with his wrist at a weird angle and his fingers mostly rigid so that the utensil is always slipping out of his hand and I just cringe. I also can't handle watching him pack bags at the store, because he mostly just awkwardly paws things into place. He is 100% useless with a screwdriver. It's a good thing his profession doesn't call for any manual dexterity, because he would get himself killed working in a factory. He's plenty intelligent, but he's also all thumbs and left feet. So, that's my anecdotal evidence that some people just aren't good at some things.

Cola, you are describing my 28 yr. old step-son to a tee. He is scary intelligent, but completely useless with the tools most of us take for granted to do constructive things with. He told me recently he wants to get a fixer-upper when he buys a house. I told him he needs to have a good contractor on retainer if he does that because it will fall to shambles if left to him to repair even the simplest of things.

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RamonaGS
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

That's my father too! He was an engineer for United Space Alliance, but could not hammer a nail straight. He could design a satellite, but when he built a sunroom on his house, I was worried about people going out there and sitting in it. I asked my stepmother (who was also an engineer, but with more sense than my father) if it looked safe to her, and to my relief she said he used a nail gun instead of a hammer...Whew! But...he does know how to grow vegetables, LOL!
~~Ramona mother of fur babies~~

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Cola82
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

I find men like that weirdly adorable. :D

Thankfully the boyfriend is under no illusions about his abilities. ;p

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RamonaGS
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

My partner is handy with the repairs, he's the superintendent/property manager. Where he falls short is lighting the BBQ grill, but he gets impatient and starts it while I'm at the store. He's admitted to me that he wasted a whole box of matches because he kind of got the charcoal lit and started throwing handfuls of matches at it. I was kind of surprised by that so I asked him "Why?" and he just shrugged his shoulders and said, "I don't know..." He has learned though, the last time he tried to light the BBQ he got it going pretty good. The flaw that time was he didn't add enough charcoal, so I had to figure out how to add more and light it without burning myself and putting out the existing fire, LOL It's all good, I would gladly take him and his inability to make flame along with everything working in the house, LOL!
~~Ramona mother of fur babies~~

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LA47
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

My husband is the prime example of a all round handy man, and can do so much, mechanical, carpentry, electrical, plumbing, etc. BUT he has never gardened and figures you just put the seeds in the ground and water. He is trying to help me and is enjoying it to but I'm always walking on egg shells trying to nicely tell him that he is drowning the tomatoes so then he just barely wets the soil so I'm trying to tell him how to water deeply, then let it dry out but, then had to explain new plants need frequent water because he almost killed the carrot seedlings doing what I told him!
I think that some of the people that don't garden thinks like my DH did and then, when the plants fail, they are too discouragedd to try again. A few generations ago, people did most things themselves, from growing and preserving their own food, clothing, mechanical work...mainly self-sufficient. Now days everything is bought or hired done. My grandkids feel that they've put in their 8 hours of work and the rest of the time should be play time. Gardening to some people, is work, not an enjoyable hobby with rewards of getting great food.
High Altitude Gardener zone 4B or 5A

gumbo2176
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

LA47 wrote:My husband is the prime example of a all round handy man, and can do so much, mechanical, carpentry, electrical, plumbing, etc. BUT he has never gardened and figures you just put the seeds in the ground and water. He is trying to help me and is enjoying it to but I'm always walking on egg shells trying to nicely tell him that he is drowning the tomatoes so then he just barely wets the soil so I'm trying to tell him how to water deeply, then let it dry out but, then had to explain new plants need frequent water because he almost killed the carrot seedlings doing what I told him!
I think that some of the people that don't garden thinks like my DH did and then, when the plants fail, they are too discouragedd to try again. A few generations ago, people did most things themselves, from growing and preserving their own food, clothing, mechanical work...mainly self-sufficient. Now days everything is bought or hired done. My grandkids feel that they've put in their 8 hours of work and the rest of the time should be play time. Gardening to some people, is work, not an enjoyable hobby with rewards of getting great food.

That basically describes me as far as all around handy man. I do most of my own mechanical work on my cars and trucks, do it all on my motorcycle, lawn equipment etc. The problem with newer vehicles is the amount of specialty equipment to simply diagnose what is wrong. Most of that is out of reach for the shade tree mechanic.

I am the gardener and have a nice plot in my back yard for vegetables and some fruit and have gotten ambitious with a front yard bordered garden for flowers that I've gotten quite a few compliments on.

I'm retired and my wife is still employed full time, so I do all the cooking, house cleaning, clothes washing, etc. When I was a fireman, those type things were done daily around the engine house and no wives were there to do it for us, so it is just another thing to do.

Funny story, when my wife and I first started dating she came to my house with one of her lady friends. They had a little something to eat, a few drinks and I gave her the tour of the house. After they left and my then girlfriend got back home, she called me. She said her friend has concerns about me. She told her I was either still married or gay because single men don't keep their houses that neat. I was neither, by the way. Just a happy divorcee looking for love----------------and found it with the lady that became my current and last my wife.

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RamonaGS
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

LA47 wrote:My husband is the prime example of a all round handy man, and can do so much, mechanical, carpentry, electrical, plumbing, etc. BUT he has never gardened and figures you just put the seeds in the ground and water. He is trying to help me and is enjoying it to but I'm always walking on egg shells trying to nicely tell him that he is drowning the tomatoes so then he just barely wets the soil so I'm trying to tell him how to water deeply, then let it dry out but, then had to explain new plants need frequent water because he almost killed the carrot seedlings doing what I told him!
I think that some of the people that don't garden thinks like my DH did and then, when the plants fail, they are too discouragedd to try again. A few generations ago, people did most things themselves, from growing and preserving their own food, clothing, mechanical work...mainly self-sufficient. Now days everything is bought or hired done. My grandkids feel that they've put in their 8 hours of work and the rest of the time should be play time. Gardening to some people, is work, not an enjoyable hobby with rewards of getting great food.
I think you are right, that they get discouraged, and stop trying, lol Sounds like he was of the mind if some is good more is better. My stepfather has a hard time with the idea that not everything can be grown in a container, or that the container has to be bigger for certain plants. My mom told me he tried to grow corn in one gallon sized flower pots. He figured it worked for the strawberries... LOL!

I think a lot of people in my generation have lost that self sufficiency. My friends my age are amazed at all the things I can do, and they refer to me as a "frontiers woman" and I remind them, these are all skills our grandparents had. But remembering back I think those skills were lost, because our parents knew how to do all those things, but never used them. Everytime I learn something new like making pickles, or homemade jam, knitting, cooking pies, or anything, my mom gets nostalgic and says, "Oh I used to do that too!" but she never even cooked when I was growing up. And most of my friend's parents were the same way, so we never had anyone teach us unless it was our grandparents. Which is really sad if people our age can't afford to pay for something.

Hey Gumbo, Fortunately for you, your wife did not listen to her friend, LOL!
~~Ramona mother of fur babies~~

gumbo2176
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

RamonaGS wrote:
LA47 wrote: Hey Gumbo, Fortunately for you, your wife did not listen to her friend, LOL!


You bet. But I was ready to slap her friend with my purse if she would have kept it up. :lol: :lol: :lol:

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RamonaGS
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

gumbo2176 wrote:You bet. But I was ready to slap her friend with my purse if she would have kept it up. :lol: :lol: :lol:

Now THAT'S the way a man settles a conflict! :lol:
~~Ramona mother of fur babies~~

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rainbowgardener
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

I do most of my own mechanical work on my cars and trucks, do it all on my motorcycle, lawn equipment etc.... I am the gardener ... vegetables and some fruit and ...flowers ... I do all the cooking, house cleaning, clothes washing, etc. ..

Oh man gumbo ... if you weren't already married, I would marry you myself! :)
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Ohio Tiller
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

I wish I had gotten my Grandma's green thumb that woman could spit a watermelon seed on a carpet and it would sprout! Women in the area would bring her their dying house plants and she would take care of them for a while and give them back a jungle in a pot!

mmt
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

This is hilarious! Oh yes there are many. My experience is with a Chinese couple that my hubby met. We get invited for a dinner and I brought a beautiful deep blue Aster pot thinking oh she gonna love it!

On the way back at the front door the wife rush back in with "oh wait wait" and she brought back the Aster pot saying "Take it back, I can't look after it. I'll just kill it. Plants never get along with me. I offer "I can help if you want you know?", she said no no no it's not gonna work with me, trust me! :?
I love white and purple flowers and I'm in Zone 8, BC Canada :)

imafan26
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

One of my neighbor's former owners cemented the entire yard. Why bother to have a house if you do that!

There are a lot of people who are not as passionate as we are about growing things. I am a master gardener and I get questions a lot from people who:

Want plants to stay the right size forever, never die, require no maintenance, and can live on rain.

My answer: Get plastic plants, but even they will have to be replaced eventually.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

DoubleDogFarm
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

Want plants to stay the right size forever, never die, require no maintenance, and can live on rain
They are called native plants or adapted plants.

Eric

imafan26
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

Native plants can thrive on neglect, you are right! Unfortunately Hawaii has one of the fastest extinction rates for native animals and plants. Mostly due to habit invasion from alien species and the fact that most of the endemic plants here grow slowly, and have no defense against foreign insects, animals (feral pigs and goats), and diseases. The natives that are available are often adapted to specific habitats so do not grow well just anywhere. And the alien plants that are brought in are prettier and grow much faster.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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tomf
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Re: People who don't grow ANYTHING at all?

From this link; https://www.biologicaldiversity.org/prog ... on_crisis/

It’s frightening but true: Our planet is now in the midst of its sixth mass extinction of plants and animals — the sixth wave of extinctions in the past half-billion years. We’re currently experiencing the worst spate of species die-offs since the loss of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago. Although extinction is a natural phenomenon, it occurs at a natural “background” rate of about one to five species per year. Scientists estimate we’re now losing species at 1,000 to 10,000 times the background rate, with literally dozens going extinct every day [1]. It could be a scary future indeed, with as many as 30 to 50 percent of all species possibly heading toward extinction by mid-century [2].
The things I do are an evolution and I am always learning. My way is not the only way of doing things, and I may and will change the way I do things as I learn better ways. So any advice that I give is in that spirit.



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