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News from the garden

For those of you who have sampled the product of my pink grapefruit tree, I am pleased as punch to report that this season all appears promising. The tree flowered with gusto this spring and incipient fruits are appearing. I estimate conservatively the tree last year produced between 60 and 70 grapefruits. I experimented with a new fertilizer. Its incredibly high nitrogen content reminds of the brains of some newspaper publishers.

Here is a picture of the venerable tree. Last year it suffered severe sunburn on its trunk. I was told by experts that I should use something called tree wrap rather than use paint to protect its bark. It flaked off in about a month. Hence, the paint. The bale of alfalfa is to be used for mulch.

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The roses also have prospered, indeed flourished, with this new fertilizer. At last count, I have 32 roses. Sometimes the count is 31, and sometimes it is 33. I am not entirely certain of the reason for the discrepancy. I suspect it has to do with all those dank and dark years being forced to rub elbows and balance sheets with knuckle-dragging corporate executives.

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Not all my vines are happy would-be grape producers. Strangely enough, I have one vine, a table grape variety called the dark putin, that grows a few inches a day. Here is a shot of this putin — sometimes called the puta — engulfing a desert willow tree:

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As you can see, it an acquisitive vine, seeking to engulf, indeed steal, lots of territory.

Here are a shot of a couple other vines:

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In contrast to the puta, these vines are timid. They lack vitality. This is, as Churchill might say, a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.

The kumquat tree was pruned in January, excessively so, I am afraid. I got carried away. But I had my reasons. I have accused it of having buckled my concrete patio with its engorged roots, causing consternation, hand wringing and a plethora of unnecessary expense. Its response is to feign disinterest while sprouting brand-spanking new shoots all up and down its trunks. To wit:

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To me, this is nothing short of hubris. It seems determined to cause further mayhem, kumquat may.

Thanks for allowing me this rant, mulch obliged.

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