We bought a house with a garden. A nice one where the soil has been
prepared down about eight or ten inches. It had weeds and had been
neglected a while. A few live items.
Enter us. I have gardened in Louisiana for about ten years, so know a
little about it. Well, SWMBO bulldozes in and just starts ripping and
tearing. Digging ditches. Arranging things on the slope with the idea that
the sprinklers will flow by gravity from high to low. Digs up the good dirt
down to the rocky level, where she plants new plants. Piles up the good
loamy dirt in large mounds that I immediately flattened some and planted the
I let her go. When all was done, she asks hows that, expecting heaps of
praise. I explain that all that was needed was to till it all up, rake out
the weeds, make rows laterally so they are not sloped, and plant the plants
on the top of the mounds, not in the gullies where they can get fungus and
rot. I do recall mentioning this the first ten or fifteen minutes into the
ordeal, but she says I didn't. I know I did, and I know I would never plant
things so a good rain would wash everything away.
What's a good book for me to go buy her and casually place next to the
toilet or wine cabinet or someplace she's sure to see it? Something REALLY
simple that goes over some of these most basic things, so she can read it
somewhere. If she reads it or hears it on Oprah, it's the rule for the
month in our house, even though I may have said the same thing for ten
Help in tender loving firmhanded manipulation appreciated.
"...the man who really counts in the world is the doer, not the mere
critic-the man who actually does the work, even if roughly and imperfectly,
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