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Father’s garden

first_imgBy Wayne McLaurinUniversity of GeorgiaAs Father’s Day approaches, I remember with fond affection my ownfather. He wasn’t a big man, but was very big in my eyes. Noteducated in a modern sense, he never failed to have time toanswer my thousand questions. He was never too busy to talk to uschildren.Many of the conversations came in the garden, started by aquestion.”What plant is that?””Is this bug good or bad?””Is that ready to eat?””Why are some peppers hot?””What causes tomatoes to turn red?””How big can a watermelon grow?””Can we quit now?”Railroad gardenWe always had a big vegetable garden on land we used with permission from the railroad.At 10:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. a passenger train passed by going toforeign places as far as we were concerned — northbound toWashington, D.C., and New York and southbound to New Orleans.We knew we weren’t going there, so we just waved at the people onthe train and showed them Southern hospitality while we wentabout our chores.Everyone had chores in the garden. One of my least favorite wasto pick squash and okra — both sticky. I was the fifth child,and now I think this chore was passed down as the older ones gotmore power and control.Okra lessonsLittle did I know then that I’d wind up getting a Ph.D. inhorticulture at Louisiana State University and do all of myresearch on okra. I reckon that garden got me geared up for life.Daddy never was into “gadgets.” We didn’t have a tractor or evena mule, just hand tools and a pushplow.Having come through World War I and the Depression and having sixchildren to support, Daddy was somewhat tight-fisted. Why haveone of those gadgets when Mr. John Scott would come over and plowthe garden with his mule Hugh?Besides the chores, we did everything else that was asked. Daddyalways asked. He never told us what to do. Of course, we neverrefused to do what he asked.That one time…Except there was that one time when my older brother V.L. decidedif he stuck his foot with a pitchfork he could get out of work –we always worked barefooted. Instead, he stuck it through his toe.Daddy took him back to the house, poured iodine on the puncture,bandaged it and made him wear shoes back to the garden. All of uslearned a lesson: don’t try it, because it won’t get you out ofgarden work.We didn’t have any of the supplies modern gardeners can’t seem todo without. We knocked pests off the plants into a coffee canwith a little kerosene in the bottom. After we were through, westrained the bugs out and saved the kerosene for the nextonslaught of insects.Specialized hoesWeed control was never a problem. We just used hoes and kept themsharpened. As the hoe heads were sharpened, of course, theybecame smaller.That was never a problem. We used the small-headed hoe to getclose around the plant. With this implement I could get rightnext to the stem and cut the grass.Woe be unto the kid, though, who cut a plant. We’d get “Son, whydidn’t you just pull the grass from around the plant with yourhands?” in the kindest of words.The newer, wider hoes were for the middles. And we never chopped.We “drew” the hoe along the top of the soil without disturbingthe soil, letting the sharp edge do the work. Chopping brought upweed seeds, the exact thing we were trying to control.Lots of lessonsWe not only planted and raised each vegetable but picked it,shelled it, helped cook it and, of course, ate everything. Theplate was never passed twice, and no one wanted to be at the end.Yet there was always enough to eat and share with others lessfortunate (or as we kids so selfishly saw it, too lazy to have agarden).As I look back, gardening with my father was one of the bestlearning experiences ever. All of the formal education I’ve gonethrough has only refined and enhanced what I learned in myfather’s garden.(Wayne McLaurin is a horticulturist with the University ofGeorgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.)last_img read more

Football News Klopp wary of Allianz Arena return with Liverpool

first_imgBayern will be without the suspended Thomas Mueller, but James Rodriguez will slot seamlessly into the attacking midfield role. Like Klopp, the Colombian expects a red-hot atmosphere having proved his form with a stunning goal at the weekend.”The fans will get right behind us and drive us on so that we feel good and give our all,” Rodriguez told Bayern’s website.”We will have to put in the perfect match in order to go through.”Liverpool has quick players, who feel good when they get a lot of room, but I think we have every chance to go through.” German bookmakers agree and have made Bayern the slight favorites. The tie needs no added spice, but Jerome Boateng and Mats Hummels are still smarting after Germany coach Joachim Loew told them, along with Mueller, that their international careers are over. The center-backs will have a point to prove against Liverpool.At the other end, the Reds’ Dutch defender Virgil van Dijk will have to subdue Rodriguez and Bayern’s record-breaking striker Robert Lewandowski. The Poland hot-shot became the Bundesliga’s top-scoring foreigner on Saturday when he extended his tally to 197 goals. So eager is Bayern head coach Niko Kovac to protect his forward that Lewandowski trained on his own on Monday as heavy snow fell in Munich.”You need to be smart and more than 100 percent ready for anything,” Van Dijk told UEFA.com on countering the threat of Lewandowski, who scored eight goals in the group stages.”If he’s trying to run at you, trying to get past you, you need to be ready for that as well.”You don’t need to give any opportunities to those strikers because they will punish you and they will score.”  Jurgen Klopp brings Liverpool to Germany to resume their battle against Bayern Munich.The five-time winners last failed to get through the last 16 stages in 2011.Bayern will be without the suspended Thomas Mueller.  For all the Latest Sports News News, Football News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. Munich: Jurgen Klopp brings Liverpool to Germany to resume their battle against Bayern Munich with the hosts billing Wednesday’s Champions League last 16 return leg as an all or nothing showdown. After a goalless draw at Anfield in the first leg three weeks ago, everything is to play for at Munich’s Allianz Arena. Klopp knows what awaits his Reds in the highly-charged arena where Bayern tend to raise their game and away teams face a barricade of whistles whenever they touch the ball.”The four goals are all well and good,” said Klopp after Liverpool’s 4-2 win on Sunday at Burnley, with Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane both scoring twice. “But what does that have to do with Munich? It will not be so easy to score four goals there as well.” The 51-year-old has a modest record of nine wins, five draws and 16 defeats in 30 games against the Bavarians — as coach of either Liverpool or former clubs Mainz and Dortmund — dating back to 2004.However, in his seven seasons with Dortmund, between 2008 and 2015, Klopp managed an impressive four wins, plus a draw and four defeats, from nine games in Munich. He tasted victory on his last visit to the Allianz Arena in April 2015 when Dortmund beat Bayern on penalties in the semi-final of the German Cup. Klopp knows that his team must walk tall at Bayern’s home.”It’s a much more positive moment for Bayern. They are top of the table and winning games comfortably again,” Klopp told Liverpool’s website.Bayern has hit form, winning their last three games with a goal ratio of 12-1 since the first-leg draw.”But if we are at our best, we can be exceptional.” Liverpool fans hope Reds’ striker Mo Salah has a red-letter day in Munich after just one goal in his last eight games. His lack of goals has not stopped Liverpool staying in contention for the Premier League title as Mane and Firmino have filled the breach. The Liverpool match is seen as a season-defining tie for the German champions.The five-time winners last failed to get through the last 16 stages in 2011 and confidence is high after they moved into top spot in the Bundesliga at the weekend for the first time since September.”It’s a very important game – everything is riding on this,” said sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic.”The boys have put some more self-confidence in the tank,” he added after Saturday’s 6-0 mauling of Wolfsburg. highlightslast_img read more