The Glory Has Departed


Norma Boeckler, Artist-in-Residence

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Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Night Drama - When the Second Shift Takes Over the Garden.
Creation with a Purpose

The Chaste Tree alleviates PMS.
 

Another world opens up in the garden at night. For example, the slugs come out to do their work. An insect that hides from bright light will also feel comfortable at night.

Flowers that pollinate at night need no colors, because white flowers show up best.

I have gone outside late at night with my little LED flashlight, to see what is happening to various plants. I found slugs in the mulch, on the walls, and around young plants. When I set out the beer bowls, I saw this -

  1. Crawling into the bowl and dying, night one.
  2. Another bunch crawling into the beer trap, night two.
  3. Slugs and leftover beer completely consumed by some creature - night three.

A dog or a raccoon could have had slugs and beer. That bowl was clean at the end. I stocked up on cheap beer and will try some more slug hunting. I thought they were under control, but as the woman says on TV, "I was living in a fool's paradise." They were chomping my newly purchased plants.

Now I have copper tape, which stops slugs by taking advantage of their electrical charge, an electricla fence of their own undoing.

I have looked at the white and yellow roses at night. One beetle likes to sit and chew vigorously on the flowers. I also have some aphids, but not on all the roses.

Walliser wrote, in her book on beneficial insects, that she became so enchanted by the dynamics of the insect world that she lost most of her interest in flowers - too static. I can understand that feeling, although plants are still my favorite part of Creation.

We divide Creation into parts, although they really constitute a living unity, balanced or achieving a new balance when something is over or under produced.

  • The soil itself is an ocean of life, with the foundation of all plant, animal, and human health managed by fungi, bacteria, protozoa, and nematodes first and the larger creatures like earthworms second. 
  • The surface is alive with the interplay of flowers, fruits, insects, spiders, toads,slugs, and ground-feeding birds, to name just a few. The birds count on certain seeds, fruits, worms, and insects, while the flowers  depend on bees, other pollinators, and each other for health. Garlic is the all-purpose medicine, insect repellent, and fixer in the garden.
  • In the air, insects and birds do their work, day and night. The food controls the population of food eaters, so an explosion of bugs in the spring is met by a baby boom among the birds.


This little outline is so simple, compared to Creation, that it is more like the Cliff Notes of a Golden Book on Creation, and yet these lessons are lost on many.

Not one living thing listed above is capable of thinking about its role in life, its purpose, or its relationship to anything else, and yet we can observe and commend on this infinity of dependencies and marvel at their steadfast work. That shows the Hand of the Creator and His gracious purpose. Medicine is still being squeezed from the soil and the plants.

After I planted the Chaste Tree, I looked up more information about it. In ancient times it was thought to suppress the libido, but now an extract has been proven to help women with PMS. Scientists know that the natural world around them is full of medicines yet to be discovered. Since antibiotics can be counterproductive, fostering superbugs that eat the antibiotic for lunch, people are turning to Creation cures. A combination of garlic and onion has been used successfully on resistant infections. -

Scientists recreated a 9th Century Anglo-Saxon remedy using onion, garlic and part of a cow's stomach.
They were "astonished" to find it almost completely wiped out methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, otherwise known as MRSA.
Their findings will be presented at a national microbiology conference.
The remedy was found in Bald's Leechbook - an old English manuscript containing instructions on various treatments held in the British Library

If you do not know someone who has battle MRSA, you do not get out very much.

Veterans Honor - I dug a hole and got an armload of these.


Roses for Health

Rose hips are still used for Vitamin C, because the seed pod (hip) is packed with that vitamin. Some people enjoy rose hip tea, and others chew on tablets made from rose hips. Birds love rose hips, too. 

I see another side of roses - emotional health. "A merry heart doeth good, like a medicine." Nothing is quite so cheering as a bouquet of roses. We currently have seven families enjoying roses.

I reached the number five at first, but added some more as I thought about it. People love the sight and fragrance of roses, which last days in a vase and showboat their beauty outdoors. When we open our front door or approach the house, we get a rush of rose fragrance each time.

I have to prune roses to get more flowers. The plant goes through a hormonal change when the flowers are left on. They change from wanting to flower to setting seed and not needing to flower. Virtually all harvests are based on flowers, seeds, and fruit of plants. Some harvests are roots and tubers.

When I prune roses, they have to go somewhere. Spent flowers become mulch. Some flowers come indoors. The rest go to neighbors and family. Big smiles follow, especially when the roses are fragrant besides - a new trend.

Most of us have emotional memories about certain plants or flowers. I liked one weed-like plant because we had one growing next to our house while I was growing up. My paternal grandfather grew roses and citrus in Florida. A family story insists that he invented a seedless tomato and that my uncle lost the plant. The story is so dark that I was told never to bring it up, and I only learned it relatively late in life. If that story is true and my uncle had been more careful, I would be in the Bahamas now on a yacht or in court defending and pursuing various legal matters.

So here I am, reliving the sight of my grandfather's garden in Florida. Team Jackson often participates in gardening, when we have a grilling event. "Welcome to Jurassic Grill." We prune roses or pick edible pod peas. 

In Bella Vista I set up a corn cob feeder for the squirrels and blue jays - for our grandson, of course. He loved it as much as I did. Seeing a squirrel sitting on a little chair eating corn is great fun.

Birds splashing in the extra large bath, squirrels swinging from ripe sunflowers, roses blooming - all lend a great feeling of cheerfulness and make each morning an event. That may be God's plan.



"I shall not be moved."
Try to scare a squirrel from a window sill. He knows better.

I stopped at a bird feed store -
and bought squirrel food.