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So if you see them (poor eyesight, dark brown) let me know. I'll pay for shipping.

Most of y'all know that I'm a Texas Master Gardener. As in, I'm all edjumacated and stuff about plants, soil, IPM, basic plant diseases and how to eradicate them, etc. Does this mean I have perfect knowledge? Of course not. But! I can give you a qualified "I don't know! But I'll find out." (But most of the problems people in this region have are so common, I typically have an answer. Rarely am I stumped.)

So last night on FB...ah, that's the problem. I need to stay off FB. :D

Last night a guy I went to school with (who I hacked into the school's computer system with and stole the teacher's assignments for our computer class, because he and I knew more about computers than she did at the time and we were horribly bored. I think we spent most classes writing programs to draw butts on people's screens. WHAT I AM SAYING is that this guy knows I'm not a complete dummy.) posted a picture of a bug on a leaf in his garden, wanting to know what it was, what to do, they're swarming, etc.

KEY WORD: SWARM. That means flight. Ahem.

I identified the bug rather quickly because a) it was a squash plant, b) I could see chew marks all over the plant, and the c) bug in question had distinctive coloring. If you guessed Squash Vine Borer, then give yourself a cupcake. In hot climes (like, say, TEXAS) they go through multiple larval stages and right now is when they're emerging as adults and preparing to lay eggs. They're horrid. They completely destroy your plants, and there's only prevention for the NEXT crop once you see adults.

So I quickly a) identified that, since that was his question and b) gave him some simple measures to avoid future infestations with both OTC sprays and an organic solution, because I'm thoughtful like that.

AND SOME DUDE COMES IN BEHIND ME, and pooh poohs everything I've said to him and says no. I know nothing. And clearly that bug is a ladybug larvae. Which...do not have WINGS and do not STAND ON LEGS AND HOP, I should mention. They're lowriders. *trumpet funk*

So I helpfully link errbody to some tamu.edu images of both bugs. (That's Texas A & M's Aggie Hort educational page, for those not in the know.) And this guy begins to give instructions for how to get rid of them - you know, the ladybug larvae and I jumped in quickly and said LADY BUGS ARE VERY GOOD AND THEIR LARVAE ARE EVEN BETTER and I am dismissed as an idiot, or quite possibly a hysterical female, IDEK.

So fuck them, and let their plants die. :) Clearly they will starve in the zombie apocalypse.

This is after a week of busting my ass to create a new garden (after re-wiring my own landscape lights, building new flagstone walkways, eradicating weeds and pests from my garden, transplanting heirloom bulbs that you can't even find anymore and people telling MY HUSBAND how lovely our garden looks. As I'm standing there covered in dirt and sweat and he's just come out to hand me a cold drink after being OUT OF TOWN for 7 days.

Nothing upsets me more than my knowledge, limited though it may be, being disregarded. And then credit given elsewhere.


Ahem. (I've had so many guys HEAR my husband say that I do all of our gardening and still ask him for advice. To my husband's credit, he always says, "I have no idea. Laura?" :)

And on that note, I am going to get some more woolly stemodia planted later today as a ground cover so it can do the work of tilling for me. (Also, you know that wonderful "country-clover" smell? It's not quite grass being cut, and there's a sweetness to it? That's the plant that makes it out here. I looooooooooove walking through my garden in the morning to wake up and smell that. <3) Note: that is a perennial plant for HOT climes. Sorry, Canada.


( 58 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 24th, 2012 04:10 pm (UTC)
that 'man knows it all' is a regional thing? Because around here, when there's a gorgeous garden around someone's home, people always - ALWAYS - go to the woman of the house. My grandpa used to get irritated just like you do. People would always be "Joyce, how do you get your gardens to look so good?" Grandpa would say, "She gets me to do it."

Still. I love when you post or link to posts of your gardens. *sigh* I'm so envious, you have no idea. I thought I was doing well my my baby's breath, 'mums, and aloe. But in fact, I'm nothing. I'm navel lint.

Jul. 24th, 2012 04:15 pm (UTC)
I guess that's what it is, but frakking hell, is it irritating.

Well, if it helps, baby's breath is an annual, so it dies every year. (And ditch the mums. They've been hybridized so many times they're not worth anyone putting effort in if they're not a commercial grower. And aloe needs to be BAKED in that sunshine! That's a native to the highlands of Mexico!)

<3 Don't give up! Just get the right plants so your heart doesn't break. :) (Check your local extension agency. They'll have an online website, most likely, that details what plants are best for your space. And they'll talk to you for free!)
Jul. 24th, 2012 04:29 pm (UTC)
Maybe they're telling him he was smart to have married you for your strong back (when not abused - HAVE YOU SCHEDULED YOUR MASSAGE?) and green thumb?

IDEK. People are stupid. You are smart. I'd listen to you every time.
Jul. 24th, 2012 04:32 pm (UTC)

I'm choosing to look at it as someone who doesn't deserve to keep their plants alive. So there. Ha.
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Jul. 24th, 2012 04:37 pm (UTC)
Who kills ladybugs?? Is this Bizarrogarden??

Jul. 24th, 2012 04:38 pm (UTC)
I KNOW, RIGHT?! This "helpful guy" also wrote out his responses like this: "C U need 2 go 2..."

Clearly he's an idiot.
Jul. 24th, 2012 05:33 pm (UTC)
This is why I do everything in my power to keep my husband waiting in the car when we go to Home Depot: he doesn't know the difference between a fender washer and a pressure treated 6X8.

Julia, in solidarity of women knowledgeable about plants, tools, and materials

Jul. 24th, 2012 05:59 pm (UTC)
*stands with a fist*
Jul. 24th, 2012 06:04 pm (UTC)
Nothing upsets me more than my knowledge, limited though it may be, being disregarded. And then credit given elsewhere. <--Yes! That is pretty damned infuriating. It doesn't seem to happen too often to me, but every time it does I feel a bit like the top of my skull has just lifted off my head because there's no room in my cranium to contain all of the rage. And to have my knowledge disregarded in favor of someone who can't even be arsed to spell out simple words? Rage fireworks would result, no question.

Also: it's kind of amazing how many times "stay off FB" is the answer.

And finally: I'm glad you mentioned the extension service (which I always forget exists). I need to figure out where I went wrong with my sugar snap peas this year. The ones that grew were FANTASTIC. Unfortunately, the plants mostly just died in infancy.
Jul. 24th, 2012 06:07 pm (UTC)
How did they die? Shrivel up? Just never thrive? Wilt and die? Also, where were the ones that died planted vs. the ones that lived? (Like, trees, power lines, sidewalk, anything that would reflect or shade)
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Jul. 24th, 2012 07:11 pm (UTC)
Is it terrible I think, well, if everyone's going to take jerkwad guy's advice, I hope their plants all shrivel and die? =) Now I"m going to slip magazine-cut-out-letter ransom notes into their bluebonnets saying, 'LISTEN TO STONEY OR THE PLANTS WILL GET IT!'
Jul. 24th, 2012 08:20 pm (UTC)
Hahahaha, if it's terrible, then I'm terrible with you. :D

You have no idea how badly I want to go around the neighborhood and leave laminated cards accusing them of Crepe Murder.
Jul. 24th, 2012 07:30 pm (UTC)
Just shut your lady mouth when men are talking, L.


Hey, you will totes appreciate this: I have enrolled at the Denver Botanical Gardens Scientific Illustration Certificate program! I'ma learn how to draw flowers and shit all Official and in Latin or something. So what I'm saying is, when I pursue my dream of running off to Fiji to document the local flora, I'm taking you with me to make sure I don't accidentally eat one that'll kill me. :)
Jul. 24th, 2012 08:21 pm (UTC)
And look at me with shoes on and the roast not in the oven! /shame

That is OUTSTANDING. I have prints that were done on Darwin's voyage of various sea creatures and plant life, and I love love LOVE that sort of thing.

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Jul. 24th, 2012 08:44 pm (UTC)
Argh! I hate the "pat the little lady on the head" online conversations. They're even worse in person. I'm glad your husband is a good joe, though.
Jul. 24th, 2012 09:14 pm (UTC)
My husband usually says something like, "Dude, she JUST TOLD YOU that she did all of this, what's wrong with you?"

Jul. 24th, 2012 10:30 pm (UTC)
"Nothing upsets me more than my knowledge, limited though it may be, being disregarded. And then credit given elsewhere." This. Yes. I feel as though steam will come out of my ears when this happens. And it's only men who do this (well, and really bitchy women with whom you don't want to be friends), even when all evidence shows YOU are right. You have the right attitude - f**k 'em! Seriously, what kind of moron wants to kill ladybug larvae?!! Why don't they just spray DDT on the praying mantids while they're at it? Idiots. You're welcome to give me advice on my rather pathetic apartment porch garden! Nothing's doing well this year except the mint.
Jul. 24th, 2012 11:03 pm (UTC)
If the mint's doing well, that means it's nice and moist. Most other plants don't like a lot of water. (95%) of plant death is from over watering. :(</p>

But! Mint means mojitos! :D

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Jul. 25th, 2012 12:26 am (UTC)

I swear, dudes like that are why penis enlargement pills were invented because you know, YOU KNOW, with attitudes like that they haven't got much going on downstairs.

I've got about as much of a brown thumb as one can possibly have, and even I know lady bugs are good. Based on this guy's posts, I hope that most of your friends' followers can tell he's a total moron. It doesn't make it any less infuriating, but sadly, thanks to advances in modern medicine, idiots like this can survive and multiply and it seems as though they're attracted in droves to Facebook.

And mad props to Mr. Stoney for giving YOU your props when backward boneheads make stupid assumptions.
Jul. 25th, 2012 12:54 am (UTC)

Bah, I hope his entire landscape dies and someone salts the earth. (Not really because plants are my friends.) BUT I WANT THAT FEELING THAT IT DID.
Jul. 25th, 2012 12:43 am (UTC)
Yes, yes, Stoney. But what did your husband think about it all?
Jul. 25th, 2012 12:55 am (UTC)
Gosh, he didn't say anything about my hose or the Ladies Society, so it was all gobbledegook to me!

Time for my pills!
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Jul. 25th, 2012 05:01 pm (UTC)
UGH, I hate it when people ask for help and you KNOW what you're talking about when you answer them and STILL they don't take your advise. FUCK. It bugs me. When you have the experience and definitely KNOW what you are talking about, it's just a slap in the face not to be believed. People who give advice when they don't know what they are talking about and who argue stuff they aren't qualified to argue are so annoying, too.

Around here it is always the woman of the house who is automatically credited with the landscaping.

I know nothing of bugs and flowers and soils and plants and stuff... I just like the look of nicely landscaped things. I took Fine Arts and Colour theory and 2D & 3D Design in college, so, I know what I want my garden to LOOK like, I just don't necessarily know anything about the mediums I would be working with. FUCK, I get confused all the time as to which flower comes back every year, perennial or annual... the words both sound like yearly things. I'm allergic to grass and tree pollen, so, I don't spend much time outside... my garden this year is DEPRESSING. We moved into this place last spring and I was all gung-ho to get the front yard pretty... dug out some flower bed areas and put in a pretty tree and all that fun stuff... this year with a new baby on my hip, I haven't spent any time outside in the yard. The weeds have taken over my pretty triangle garden. Sad.

ANYWAY, that was rambling...


Jul. 25th, 2012 05:40 pm (UTC)
People were commenting on our lawn (which is a prairie grass that doesn't get mown - I HATE BERMUDA) so lawns and trees are always Men's Territory down south. EYE ROLL.

Well, my next post has all sorts of design info for you, if you're interested? I'm sorry it makes you unhappy, though. :(

(Annual - one anum. One year. And then dead.)

You could put vinegar in a spray bottle and stand out there with your baby on your hip and squirt the weeds with vinegar. That'll kill them and you won't have to worry about your little one. <3
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Jul. 25th, 2012 09:20 pm (UTC)
And on that note, your hubby rocks. *nods*
Jul. 25th, 2012 09:24 pm (UTC)
Yes he does! As do those shoes in your icon. *grabby hands*
Jul. 26th, 2012 02:06 am (UTC)
I've been wanting to do the master gardener program at my local university. I admire their gardens all summer long and your post just makes me want to do it more.
Jul. 26th, 2012 01:02 pm (UTC)
You should, you should! Going back to school for this was so wonderful.
( 58 comments — Leave a comment )


Are You Actually

Reading this? I'm just curious. Because that's really detail-oriented of you. Feel free to stop reading. But you can see that there's more here, so are you going to keep reading? Really? That's pretty dedicated. I'm impressed. No, really. I'm not being sarcastic, why do you get like that? See, this is the problem I have with your mother - yes. YES. I'm going there. It's time we put all of our cards on the table.

I love you, why are you doing this? After all we've been through? You don't have to be like this. You know, still reading. You could be baking a pie. And then sharing it with me.

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