Godless in the garden


Godless in the garden

Discussing all aspect of gardening.

Location: Planet Earth
Members: 181
Latest Activity: 4 hours ago

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Comment by Joan Denoo on November 26, 2018 at 12:56am

Daniel, your Jade plant is a beauty. I have not seen one bloom either. The red Christmas cactus is a stunner, and the salmon-colored one quite unusual. 

As to sore and tired body, I think Rufus has an idea to fix that!

Comment by Loam Gnome on November 25, 2018 at 10:33am

I don't know about others here.  Not much going on in my yard and garden now.  Indoors, some things are blooming to keep me perky.

Never had a jade plant bloom before.  This one is 18 years old.  I bought it as a little plant for my office window, when I started working here.  Something inspired it this fall, to put out one flower bud.

The Christmas cacti are blooming nicely.  The first ones are done already.  I think it's because they were in a warmer window.

They are so easy to start from cuttings.  Just cut off pieces and stick into potting soil.  This was started that way, many years ago.

Comment by Loam Gnome on November 20, 2018 at 10:51am

Randy, I'll second the wish.  Happy Thanksgiving to all!

I know I have much to be thankful for.  There are reminders of that every day when I'm out in the yard / garden / orchard.  Sometimes when my back or joints or fatigue get to me, I forget that.  But again, I am very thankful!

Also anticipating the next garden season.

Comment by Randall Smith on November 20, 2018 at 7:32am

Daniel, we all go through "dark" periods. I'm just glad you're over it and back with A/N--hopefully permanently. (I am curious as to how Ning dealt with your "depression".)

No doubt about it, gardening is our best therapy/ist. What you do in and around your garden is truly inspirational. Love those orchids! A little color indoors during long winter months perks up our mood. Happy Thanksgiving!

Comment by Loam Gnome on November 19, 2018 at 10:09am

I appreciate all of the supportive expressions about what happens when someone's mind goes to that dark place.  Mine was certainly there too, last Jan/Feb.  I had to change some things that I thought about myself, and others at that time, and accept some things, and reboot some aspects of my psyche.   For what it's worth, gardening remained, and remains, a therapy that works better than anything else. 

What to do in the winter?  Fortunately here, the winter is milder than where I grew up in the midwest.  I think if I was there, I would hope to have access to a greenhouse, or big south facing windows, or something.

Yesterday I spread a truckload of leaves.  I lot of them went around the blackberry vines, which I cleaned up and transplanted a couple.  The some into the tree surrounds, where I protect young trees from marauding herbivores for a few years until the trees are tall and strong enough to fend for themselves.  The leaf mulch keeps the soil weed-free (almost, and the weeds are easy to pull), and keeps the soil soft and moist.

I also got out the wire cutters and removed some vole-guards, which protect young trees from girdling by meadow voles.  As the trees grow, these guards are a hazard to expanding trunks, and not needed when the bark is thick and tough.

Before - this apple trees has a bifurcate trunk, with 2 varieties of apple.  It's the first tree that I ever grafted.


I keep mulch pulled away from trunks, a little, with the thought I don't want voles huddling there and chewing, despite the more mature bark.

I spend some time admiring the orchids that I posted before.  Here they are now.

Then I pruned a few fruit trees, mostly some figs.

About 2015, I planted a quince tree.  Quince trees are a different from the beautiful flowering quinces around old farm houses.  The fruits are pear-shaped, bigger than apples or pears, but more sour & harder.  I've never eaten one.  Long ago, they were grown as sources of pectin for jellies.  Some varieties are edible, reported to have a wonderful fragrance.  The tree grew until I ran over it with the riding mower.  So I left it alone.  I cleaned that up too, discovering it has 4 trunks, each about 4 feet tall. Likely from rootstock.   I'll look for sources of quince scion, and make a multitrunk, multivariety tree.   Here is an image of a quince from the USDA National Agricultural Watercolors series, from the early 1900s. 

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 17, 2018 at 10:34pm

Jotham, please reach out for help when you feel like your life is not worth living. Sometimes it is difficult to see any options when life gets into any kind of tangle. 

"Options, without awareness, yield us no freedom."

~ Ed Lindaman, author, lecturer, futurist and the former president of Whitworth College. He was director of programming for the Apollo space project with the North American Rockwell Corporation. He was my mentor for my master's degree. 

There may be options available to us about which we have no awareness. Committing suicide before exploring for more options may lead to a satisfying and rewarding life. 

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 17, 2018 at 9:50pm

Josham, thank you for your thoughtful response. Of course, you are right, I "downplayed" the situation. I have no right to judge, and of course, I do when I make assumptions based on nothing. I don't know the other's pain. 

My great-granddaughter's 18th birthday was today and we had a huge family & friends gathering to celebrate her day. Sadly, a dear friend of hers and classmate committed suicide last night and Katelynn had a hard time holding back her tears and sorrow. We had a subdued day until, late in the afternoon, she had her cake and birthday song delivered in robust voices. She lightened up before the evening was over. She was able to find relief from her grief with the experience of the joy of living. 

Comment by Jotham Timothy Bessey on November 17, 2018 at 5:28pm

Having suicidal thoughts most of my life I have to speak up when someone downplays another person's problems.

Suicide is a permanent solution yes. But how do you know the problem is "temporary". Some people think that no life at all is better than the one they have.

Right now, my life is ok. But death is a better option than doing what most people think I should be doing.

So I don't blame Spud's brother. He saw no other way out of a life that he couldn't bear to continue in.

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 17, 2018 at 4:51pm

Oh! Dear! Spud, I am so sorry to learn of your brother's suicide, a permanent solution to a temporary problem. 

How did you fell about his way of dying? What impact did it have on you and your family? 

You have many challenges to overcome, your family's religious beliefs, your brother's suicide, and the everyday challenges of being alive at this time in society.

You are such a good and caring friend here on Atheist Nexus and Godless in the Garden and bring a wonderful spirit to our groups.  

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 17, 2018 at 4:43pm

Randy, absolutely, your great-grandfathers for generations used the authoritarian method and that system tends to raise up people that we no longer think is proper, appropriate, healthy living. Control was a big issue

My former husband was a Smith and we, the therapist and I, thought that was why the children and I experienced such brutal behavior. I accepted it as normal because I was raised by an authoritarian father and mother. It took me far too long to realize we were not raising healthy children. One boy was a bully, the other boy was a sissy, and the girl was timid to the point of not speaking her truth, until one day, she stood in front of her Dad and said, "You don't have the right to treat us this way!" When she said that, her nose was at the level of his brass buckle. Her words woke me up and I left with three ten-year-old children, two mother cats with their litters, and pulling a camping trailer that we lived in for a year until we bought that old, condemned house for $12,000, which we paid off quickly. We, the children and I, turned it into a beautiful home. Selling that place was the hardest thing I think I have ever done. 

So, give yourself a hug, pat yourself on the back, and know that your life has meaning and it is your right and responsibility to think for yourself. 

You "taught middle school science (mostly)," and that means that you did a job that few people do well. You brought science to life for young children and that makes a difference in their lives. Congratulate yourself for a job well done and celebrate that fact. 


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