Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Mondays are our usual day of the week to work in the garden at the front lake here at Lake Summerset.  Yesterday I found myself working alone.  That’s okay because I don’t expect the ladies on my crew to show up every week.  We all have lives and do what we can.  I copped out one day this summer because I had a cold.

I had a pleasant hour deadheading Purple Cone Flowers and Black Eyed Susans.  I cleaned up some day lilies (if you don’t know I despise day lilies) and watered all the recently planted plants.  I had put some mums out in the ground and one lady donated a rose bush.  I made sure they had plenty of water.

I decided I wanted to decorate some more for fall.  I had gotten two bales of straw last week and put the mums next to them.  I went down highway 75 to the pumpkin farm and got four pumpkins.  Deciding that was not enough, I ran home and got four of my still green pie pumpkins.

But I wanted more!  I called the farm that sells sweet corn in the summer to see if they would sell me some corn stalks to make a fodder shock.

If you don’t know what a fodder shock is let me explain.  You take a bunch of freshly cut stalks of corn and stack them into an “x” shape.  Nothing screams fall like a fodder shock.

The farmer called me back and told me to come on over.   I took my big ass clipper (thank you Jess and Anthony), jumped in the truck and headed to the farm. The farmer met me and we shook hands.  Isn’t shaking hands just the nicest gesture?  I like it so much better than the two kisses on the cheeks like the Europeans do.

The farmer checked to see that I had the tool to cut the corn stalk.  I proudly displayed my lovely big ass clipper.  He pointed me across the street and told me to take about twenty and that would make a nice shock.  I gave him a fiver.

My big ass clipper made headway with those corn stalks.  I had twenty in no time at all.  I pitched them into the back of the truck, closed the tailgate, with some effort, and made my way back to the front gate.

When I got back to the gate and parked I discovered I had screwed up the tailgate.  Somehow, the little wire that holds it in place had gotten tangled in the closure.  I’m sure I will have to take it to the Chevy dealer to get it open again.  At this point in time I should have realized I should just go home and go back to bed.

I lifted my corn stalks out and tied five of them together a little above the midway. I put them in a tripod where I wanted the fodder shock and lifted each leg out to balance the shock.  Then I put a corn stalk here and a corn stalk there until they were all in place.  About that time the wind picked up.  I gathered all the remaining fodder that had scattered around me and when I looked back the fodder shock slowly leaned and fell to the ground.  J C Penneys!  I took it all apart and put it back together again.  This time I pulled off a couple of ears of corn to make it not so heavy.  It fell again.

Cars were passing by and a couple gave me a wave.  Probably splitting a gut laughing at the old broad who was trying to stack corn stalks.  Well to heck with them, I’m making a fodder shock.

I got it back together and it seemed pretty stable.  I had laundry going at home and determined to head there and get something done today beside stacking corn stalks.

I cut a long length of twine and decided to go back later and tie the fodder together.  In the meantime I got three loads of laundry done.

When I got back to the front gate the stupid fodder shock was on the ground.  I put it back together again and tied it at the top.  I took a picture of it so I had proof that it once stood tall and lovely.

It rained last night and if it is on the ground today it will be mildewing.  Oh goody!  I’m allergic.  I’m taking three bamboo poles today and if it is down I am starting with the bamboo poles in the ground.  An Asian fodder shock!

Peace be with you, and my fodder shock.

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