I am crazy about the Kousa dogwood. They seem to be everywhere. I have two just out of infancy and hope for them a long life as well as for me. The one in front of Morrice the Florist is particularly impressive.

There is a violet rose bush on the State Road side of the intersection with the Vineyard Haven-Edgartown Road. Who knows what it is? I have looked through my rose books. I might have to knock on the door and beg a couple of cuttings from the owner.

Here we go again. Everyone gets rain but us. It seems to miss us every time it is predicted. I never get my hopes up until I am soaking wet. I am beginning to fret about the lack of water in the gardens. All I do is haul hoses around and complain. My non-gardening friends do not want to hear it.

I just ordered some new flat hoses. They are so handy for those of us who garden for a living. Otherwise, for heaven’s sake, use all rubber. You will save a lot of aggravation. They can be left out all winter and run over with the truck.

Paul Munafo phoned with this great garden tale. It seems he has had a rose for eight or nine years which refuses to bloom.

After seeking and following all the usual advice — more water, less water — prune — fertilize, he asked Liz Thompson at SBS. She told him to dig it up and get rid of it. He mentioned this advice to the thorny culprit and within a few weeks it was blooming away.

So, there you have it! When all else fails, threaten!

This reminded me of another Liz Thompsonism: Once I inquired how things were going for her and her reply was “Everyone’s on the right side of the fence and nobody is bleeding too bad.”

Grafting is a fascinating process. I am sure you have seen the five kinds of apples on one tree offered in the seed catalogs?

I was following a young woman up Center street in Vineyard Haven. She was carrying luggage, obviously just off the ferry. She moved right along in a purposeful manner and, without missing a step, leaned down through a fence to smell a red rose. It completely made me happy to see her taking care of business and stopping to smell.

I am glad I live somewhere that a turkey-John Law encounter is front-page news. I have to say in defense of the owner of said turkey, it would be upsetting to have a pet shot. Of course, we know there are three sides to every story: his, theirs and the truth.

I have to quote this plaque I have had on my kitchen shelf for years:


“All should leave their work when the signal is given for them to gather in at mealtime, and be in their rooms in readiness to repair to the dining room, in order and in fear of God, keeping step together.

“When you take a piece of bread, take a whole piece and when you cut meat, cut it square and equal, fat and lean, and take an equal portion of bones. Take it on your plate together with the sauce and not be cutting small pieces in the platter and putting them directly in your mouth.

“If you are obliged to sneeze or cough, don’t bespatter the victuals. Make use of your handkerchief.

“It is not allowable to eat wheat bread the same day it was baked, for it is considered very unwholesome.

“When you have done eating, clean your plate, knife and fork, lay up your bones in a snug heap by the side of your plate, scrape up your crumbs, cross your knife and fork on your plate with the edges towards you.

“And lastly, when you drink, never extend your underlip so far that one would think the cup was agoing to be swallowed whole.”

Tomorrow, as a kick-off to the farmers’ market in Vineyard Haven, there will be a plant sale at the Baptist church, corner of Williams and Spring streets, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.