Hello Augusteries, and happy Friday!

Welcome back to the Good To Grow site, and thanks for being here.

Woohoo – it’s Friday, it’s a brand-new month and it’s still summertime. There are lots of reasons to cheer. Let’s get started by saying hi to our beloved Panel of Experts. Hi everyone!


“Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiii Liza!”

You’re so cute! From left to right, that’s Andy Williams, Tim Thackaberry, EZ Ed Johnson, Dottie Correll and Lewis Casey. If you’d like to know more about them, please click here.

For the past several weeks, we’ve been getting to know our Experts a little better. Today’s question runs along the same line. Here it is:

Q. What motivates you to get out of bed every morning?

Expert Andy, you’re up first as usual:

A. The sun is usually my motivation.  It is pretty much always shining here in AZ and when it comes up, I’m usually awake.  Then I know that if I don’t get out of bed and get things done by 11am it will feel like the surface of the sun in no time.  We go hermit style here in AZ in the summer.  It is the equivalent of Winter in the northern and midwestern states.  We are motivated to beat the heat.  Now it is the Cavaliers, but that is another subject altogether.  Also when you get to be my age, time is usually wasted away while laying in bed.  I feel like I am now running out of time to live, have fun, make a difference and enjoy others.  I wish I could go back to my teenage years and have that time back that I spent sleeping until 11 or 12.  What was I doing that made me so tired back then?  Eleven or twelve hours of sleep seems so preposterous now, and a genuine waste of time.  Especially when you can get 6 hours, then sneak in a relaxing nap.

A. There are days where it is really, really difficult to find this motivation, days where I have to yell at myself (metaphorically) to force my feet over the side of the bed. And the answer to this question has stayed the same for the last 10+ years, day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year: I want to see my daughter grow up. When I can’t find another reason, when getting out of bed seems like an act of will far beyond my ken, I come back to that. And I get out of bed.

A. I suppose it is curiosity. I wonder what will make me laugh. I want to see who I made mad, or who I could possibly make smile. I want to know who may be at the other end of the phone, what my niece and nephews are into today, what will arrive in my inbox, who is discouraged, who is hopeful. I wonder if it will rain today.


Liza here. Experts Dottie and Lewis are normally up next, but they are unavailable this week. They’re fine, just busy. Lewis may join us later in the weekend, and if he does, I’ll update this post. For now, let’s admire their adorableness:


And wind down this week’s Experts Panel.

Since I’m the moderator, no one asked me what motivates me to get out of bed each morning. But since Dottie and Lewis aren’t here, I’ll go ahead and answer my own question.

What motivates me is simple – I get out of bed because I can. Because I’m still here, because I lived to see another day. Knowing that I was granted one more day makes me jump out of bed every morning, grateful and thankful. Not everyone is so fortunate. It’s reason enough for me to celebrate putting my feet on the floor.

There you have it.

What about you? What motivates you to get out of bed each morning? Let me know in the comments section.

Fellas, thank you so much for your answers this week. I enjoyed them very much!

Let’s call that a wrap for the Panel. The Experts will return next Friday. They hope to see you back here.

Next up, the puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Last week, I asked if these Lantana flowers were real or fake:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, real or fake plant puzzler

Let’s see how you answered:

Claude from Random Rants and Prickly Plants wrote, “Real live lantana, much beloved of butterflies, bees and hummingbirds…”

mr_subjunctive from Plants Are the Strangest People wrote, “Yep. Real.”

Martha from Plowing Through Life wrote, “Looks real to me.”

Steph from Indianapolis wrote, “Real, but I might be rusty.”

Liz from Jemez wrote, “Real!”

That’s five votes real, zero votes fake.

What’s the correct answer?

Let’s take a wider view to find out:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, real or fake plant puzzler

Real! One of my absolute favorite flowering plants. Those blossoms strike me as endlessly cheerful. Fake flowers can’t compare.

Well done, everyone! Not surprising, since you’re so plant smart.

Claude, you were first with the correct answer, which makes you the best answerer. Nicely played, sir! For being so swift this week, you’ve earned the following title: Boom shakalaka I’m the Greenest ooh ooh baby I’m the Bestest ah ah ah I’m the Fastest ba da do dum I’m the Awesomest dee dum dee dum I’m the Hotdiggediest Dog in the Universe la la la and I’m a Winner in Life and Blogs oh yeahhhhhhh. Congrats! Besides the snazzy title, you may also multiply all the prizes by two hot fudge sundaes as my thank you to you.

Everyone’s a winner. Good job! To show my appreciation for you playing, I’d like you each to have the following prizes: An August state of mind, three steps toward the door, 12-1/2 blessings, four couch pillows, eight accolades, a lunar landing in your honor, two cuddly prairie cats, La Bajada hill, five eggplants, 14 bonus points, a stapler, six potato gratin appetizers, an extra forefinger, a platinum trophy, one field of wildflowers, six gold stars, a new pair of socks, a starring role, one coupon good for one voucher, a twinkle in your eye, plum soup, a gentle incline, a poem about your childhood, several compliments, one caulk gun, a spare halo, cashews, one panoramic view and seven fresh green chiles.

Congrats! And thanks for playing!

Up next, the new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Is this Dracaena plant real or fake:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, real or fake plant puzzler

Think you know the answer, smartyplants? Leave your best guess in the comments section. You have until midnight MST (that’s 2a.m. EST) next Thursday, August 7th, to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) after next week’s panel of Experts. The prizes may be imaginary but the link to your site and the glory of winning are oh-so-real.