No “farmer in the Dell” here


I think…. A rough estimate of the cost of the strawberries (2) I’ve gotten so far, from the pots I’ve planted next to the house this year, are about $15.87 each. The plants themselves look good – lots of big green leaves, lots of flowers – however, the end result seems to be a bit paltry. No shortcake going on here, that’s for sure. I was able to pick up Monroe’s on Pioneer Trail, and these were great as usual, but I only made it up once. I’ll have to hit my stash in the freezer to help me out. The cherries are also over, I hear; didn’t receive anything at all. Hope I don’t stiffen up too much with the peaches. The tomatoes look good; a few of the little guys even turn red – think about it! However, I have competition for their consumption. I think whatever raccoon figured out the meal schedule here (up at half past five, feed the cats inside – and make litter boxes, make breakfast for the kittens on the porch around five forty or so) has set his raccoon clock to make an appearance shortly after the kibble arrives in the dishes. I overheard one of them peeking around the porch railing by the steps to see if I had already served the entree – I probably wanted to place an order for a bagel ” everything “. I disabused them of the idea that the propagation was meant for them by waving a stick and chasing them through the bushes in front of the porch. So far, they are not convinced.

Anyway, someone helped themselves to a tomato here and there and devoured the store-bought peaches that I put on the porch railing to finish ripening; seemed like a good idea at the time, in broad daylight, when I thought I’d think of bringing them in at night.

Bad! Apparently, they were ripe enough to be attractive…and juicy enough to wreak havoc everywhere. Only the pits were left when I came out the next morning. No one (fingers crossed) has yet discovered the red raspberries in two of the other jars; I took them as quickly as I spotted them, hoping to taste one or two. The blackberries that were to join them gave up the ghost some time ago but scattered friends and relatives all around, mostly among the ferns, where they hide until some unwary soul tries to make horticultural inquiries and be torn by these infernal thorns. I haven’t seen any berries on these guys. They’re just the neighborhood marauders.
My main farming connection these days seems to be as a judge for the Miss Agriculture USA national pageant held recently at Streetsboro and Gallagher Farms in Mantua/Freedom. Some of these young ladies would knock your socks off (assuming you took off your work boots first). They’ve started their own businesses, won awards for all sorts of efforts, agricultural or otherwise, worked in big organizations like Future Farmers of America or John Deere International, volunteered for worthy causes. Phew! A person might get tired just by following their FaceBook pages. They’re all about AGAdvocating for agriculture. We could all starve without it. Remember that the next time you sit down to a hearty meal…or your dietary delights. If nothing else, the agricultural industry is helping to bring tasty, nutritious and climate-friendly new items to your table. “No farms, no food” is for real.

And, speaking of eating, has anyone else seen “Dennis the Menace” in the Sunday Record-Courier? (It’s been a good stretch for cartoons lately.) Dennis announces to his mother that he’s starving, then complains about having carrots and broccoli again. Mom says, “That’s the plan.” Dennis complains about having veggies EVERY night and mom says, “You need veggies so you can grow up and be strong like your dad. Dennis looks at Dad, an ordinary guy with an unimpressive build, whistling while putting something in a cupboard, and says, a little skeptically, “Nice try.”

The last panel of the “Crankshaft” set, after several depictions of explosions of fireworks of all kinds going off all over the place, shows Crankshaft himself and the whole family hiding behind an overturned picnic table, as well as a a tree and a trash can. The very last part of the sign shows similar explosion symbols popping out of a barbecue and a crankshaft saying, “Okay…maybe using gunpowder to light the grill was a bad idea. idea !”
You think?


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