I spent all night reading the Rushing and Reeves book, which, on the one hand, is a bit of a scam, because clearly they wrote some parts of the book to be slapped into any book about gardening in any Southern state. But it’s a scam I can appreciate. But on the other hand, the book is excellent and I poured through it and have about eleventy billion thoughts. It’s organized by plant and all the plants they talk about are ones that can grown in Tennessee (though here, especially, is where you can see that the content is designed with an eye for repurposing–the “Banana” entry says that only those of us on the coast can expect to get fruit from our banana plants, though anyone can enjoy the plant itself. Now, if there’s some coastal area of Tennessee, I’m afraid it will come as a great and unpleasant shock to the people of Alabama and Mississippi.)
But most of their advice boils down to “get a good fertilizer, work the soil well, and plant your plants in a sunny spot.” Their biggest concern are pests. They have pages of advice for how to protect yourself from bugs and animals and more bugs.
I called my mom to get her advice and I told her all of the plants were were thinking of growing and she just said, “Oh, no, B., think of all of the weeds you’ll have. You will die.”
I could hear my dad shouting in the background, “Weeds never bothered her Aunt B. Look at all the stuff they pull out of their disgraceful mess of a garden.”
Anyway, Rushing and Reeves recommend you not depend on a mere sunny window to start your plants. The marigolds and, hmmm, looks like maybe the broccoli, disagree.