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Mike’s Holiday Hort Sing-Along


If it weren’t for the holiday season, we probably would have legislated the month of December out of existence long ago. It’s not exactly a month that makes gardeners salivate–unless you’re a poinsettia freak, which is even more cause for worry.

So while you’re counting days until you can begin killing plants again (indoor varieties notwithstanding), I’ve come up with a few songs you can sing around the artificial fire in your pre-fab greenhouse. I’ve appropriated the music from some holiday songs for two reasons:

1) you already know the melodies, and 2) I don’t have to pay royalties.

Silent Blight

(To the tune “Silent Night”)

Silent blight, lowly blight s

All is brown, what a sight

Round yon cultivar, looking so lush

Holey foliage, turning to mush

It’s a fungal disease

It’s a fungal disease

Silent blight, lowly blight

Experts quake at the sight

Unknown pathogen, virulent strain

Nothing to be done, spreads in the rain

Eighty bucks down the drain

Eighty bucks down the drain

Deck the Deck

(To the tune “Deck the Halls”)

Deck the deck with potted pansies

Fa la la la la, la la la la

Don’t forget to wash your handsies.

Fa la la la la, la la la la

Plant we now with feelings tender

Fa la la, la la la, la la la

When we’re done, go on a bender,

Fa la la la la, la la la la

See the trailing spud before us

Fa la la la la, la la la la

Catch the wave but please don’t bore us

Fa la la la la, la la la la

Follow me in trendy planting

Fa la la, la la la, la la la

Shlepping soil just leaves me panting

Fa la la la la, la la la la

Fast away the water passes,

Fa la la la la, la la la la

Fill those pitchers, cans and glasses

Fa la la la la, la la la la

Heat will fry your plants like crazy

Fa la la, la la la, la la la

Think I’ll get a plastic daisy

Fa la la la la, la la la la

What Weed Is This?

(To the tune “Greensleeves”)

What weed is this that laid to seed

In ev’ry garden is creeping?

Whom herbicide and curses cried

Can’t keep the gard’ner from weeping.

This, this is dandelion

Whom children send the seeds a flyin’.

Hate, hate this awful plant

This bane, this son-of-a-mmmmm.

So bring in shovels to dig them out,

Obsessed to distraction.

Get on your knees and lose your keys

While putting yourself into traction.

This, this is Creeping Charlie,

O’er runs your lawn and makes it gnarly.

Hate, hate this awful plant

This bane, this son-of-a-mmmmm.

Here come Catalogs

(To the tune “Here Comes Santa Claus”)

Here come catalogs, here come catalogs

Filled with bulbs and seeds

Pictures of the perfect plants that

Ev’ry gardener needs.

There’s a lily of a color no one ever

has seen

It will die within a month–its zone is rated fifteen.

Here come catalogs, here come catalogs

Luring me to spend

They’ll accept my MasterCard for roses without end

There are months of cold before us

Gardens withered and sere

We’ll be broke before it’s March ‘cause

Catalogs are here

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questions

I am sick of slugs. Perhaps if I knew their life cycle I could get rid of them. Where do they go over winter? Where do they come from? What is the best way to get rid of them?

I have a nicely sheltered, rounded 7-foot tall Japanese red maple on the southeast corner of my backyard. Half of the tree has lost its leaves, the formerly red bark is turning gray, and a good-sized square of bark has been stripped off on the side that faces the yard. I sprayed the exposed bark with black pruning spray to close any entry for insects. I have not cut off any of the branches.

Does the winter have any effect on the tree? Should I look for some insect infestation? What should I do now?

Is there a best time to plant tulips? I see them at the garden centers in late summer but I am afraid that it is too early to plant them. If I wait too long, I might forget all about them.

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