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Hello Ju-Junebes, and happy Friday!

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

As the world begins to shut down another week, on this site, we’re gearing up for Friday Festivities. I’ve got an all-new Ask the Experts Panel for you, as well as plenty of plant puzzler action.

Let’s start by saying hi to the 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.

This week, I decided to give the Experts a chance to toot their own horn. Here’s the question:

Q. What do you think is your best personality trait?

Expert Andy Williams, you’re up first as usual:

A.
I think that my best personality trait is being a nice guy.  I continue to listen to people describe me this way, particularly after my harsh divorce.  Prior to this, perhaps I heard it but it didn’t sink in because of the turmoil of my personal life.  Divorce is a horrible thing.  But it was also a time of deep personal reflection for me.  It allowed me to find myself and determine who I am.  That process is still ongoing.  I learn more about me every day.  And one specific thing has stuck out throughout the timeline.

Approximately 2 years ago, I was meeting with a gentleman in Indiana.  His brother was getting married, and he asked me if I had known of his brother’s wife, whom he mentioned by name.  It turns out, I dated her for a long time during and a bit after college.  He told me that she had referred to me as “the nicest guy she’d ever dated”.

Then, just last week at a formal dinner event, I had the pleasure of sitting next to a wonderful woman whom I’ve known for several years.  As I was telling her about my “new life” and expressing how happy I am, she told me the following; “I am so happy for you to have found someone who realizes what a special and nice guy you are.”

Certainly, there are a lot of other things I could’ve been called.  But I will certainly take “nice” and run with it.

A.
I really don’t enjoy tooting my own horn, it makes me uncomfortable; in fact, I don’t enjoy anyone tooting my horn. My attitude toward this is along the lines of the old Groucho Marx quote: “I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member.” I immediately look with a jaundiced eye at anyone who gives me a compliment, myself included.

Gun to my head: I’m smart and I have a pretty good sense of humor. Those are my major redeeming qualities.

A. Best personality trait?  I’m funny. No really. Well maybe not funny funny.  Just, well, kinda funny. Not laugh out loud funny. Just, hmm, that’s funny.

—————-

Expert Dottie is unavailable this week. Let’s admire her adorableness:

And move on to Expert Lewis Casey. Lewis, what say you, fine sir?

A. I care.

Lewis, look at you being all brief this week! That’s new for you, haha! But really, that short phrase is incredibly accurate at describing yourself.

EZ, I think you’re hilarious! And your answers always make me smile. Thank you for this week’s contribution. Thack, I know you hate tooting your own horn, but you’re correct – you are smart and you have a wicked sense of humor. Well played! Andy, yeah, you’ve got that Midwestern niceness about you! I think it’s cool that you have lots of examples where you know what people think about you.

It’s probably good that Dottie sat this one out – she’s got too many wonderful qualities to narrow it down to one. She’s compassionate, kind, loving, brilliantly funny, intelligent, genuine, talented…the list goes on and on. I hope she feels better soon!

Let’s call that a wrap for this week’s Panel of Experts. The Experts will return in a week. They hope to see you back here.

Up next, the current puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Last week, I asked if this plant was real or fake:

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

Let’s see how you answered:

mr_subjunctive from Plants Are the Strangest People wrote, “Partly real. Real leaves, fake flowers.”

Joseph Brenner from Texas wrote, “Real plant, fake flowers and butterfly.)B>{D}

Can you put a rush on that life raft? They’re closing highways out of Texarkana like crazy!”

Carmen wrote, “I agree, real plant (peace lily maybe?) And very fake flowers. I don’t like them together, it looks like a toodler stuck the fake flowers in there…at least I hope so, any adult who thinks it looks good has very bad taste!! Lol”

Claude from Random Rants and Prickly Plants wrote, “That is a real plant south fake flowers. And I’m really indifferent.”

That’s four votes for real plant, fake flowers. Zero votes for anything else besides a life raft (hope you’re staying safe, Joseph!)

What’s the correct answer?

Let’s take a closer look:

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

Oh yes, the plant is real. The flowers and butterfly very fake. I saw this at my bank and it made me groan. Why ruin the look of a perfectly good plant with fake flowers? I have no idea who thought that would look attractive.

But way to go, everyone. You totally weren’t tricked in the slightest! Well done!

I’d like to show my appreciation for you playing by awarding you the following prizes: The first weekend of June, one chrome trophy, cheese enchiladas, four gold medals, 16 bonus points, your own personal mascot, three treasures, two postage stamps, a gazebo, the title of “grooviest, awesomest, bestest, coolest, winningest plant person ever” for the weekend, Shelby County, one limousine ride, three hummingbird feeders, a hillside, two spare jazz hands, 15 minutes on a Ferris Wheel, six more rewards, two baby ducks, four cherry empanadas, Karen, a coupon for unlimited dog kisses, Rio Grande Boulevard, one new garbage disposal, a radio dedication in your honor, three folded napkins, five surprises, two petroglyphs, time and a half, one ankle bracelet, 12 extra golden years, two grilled cheese sandwiches, and one coin flip.

Congratulations, and thanks for playing!

Up next, a new puzzler for you.

???Real or Fake???

I’ve used a similar plant to this in the past, but not this exact one. Do you think these flowers and the plant are 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, June 11th, to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winners 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.

You still have time to guess the current puzzler, in which I asked if these plants were real or fake:

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

Leave your best guess in the comments section. The deadline is tonight at midnight MST (that’s 2am EST). I’ll reveal the answer and the winners after an all-new Ask the Experts Panel tomorrow evening. There will be imaginary prizes galore for all who play. Good luck!

Hello funky chickens, and happy Friday!

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

Yay for Friday!!! And yay for the return of our beloved Experts! They’ve been on a long break. I couldn’t be more delighted to have them back.

Let’s get right to it by saying hi to everyone. Hi Experts!

 

“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.

Because the Experts have been gone for a long time, I decided to keep their new question simple. Here it is:

Q. You’ve been away awhile…how are ya? Anything new or exciting going on?

Expert Andy Williams, you’re up first as usual:

A. I’ve been fantastic, thank you for asking.  Spring is in the air, Kentucky didn’t go undefeated or win the tournament, Indiana landed a true center, I received my Indy 500 tickets in the mail, Uncle Sam is paying me for the 1st time in 20 yrs., AZ is funding a trip to Kauai the week of July 4th with their tax friendliness, Liza took time to stop by on her AZ journey, my business venture is booming, I’ve been home for 3 straight weeks, the Diamondbacks are back on the field again and don’t act like their going to lose my predicted 95 games, I don’t have to go to China until mid-July, had a great visit by 3 of my high school buddies (Lutes, Tackett and Watson for you Hoosiers), figured out my golf swing today with my golf coach who unbeknownst to me is also a Hoosier, and my girlfriend Stacy and I are getting along swimmingly.  God has blessed me and shown me the light of life over the past year.  So, I’m very thankful to him and all of my great friends and family who make me who I am.

A. Doing well, Liza, thanks! I hope you are good, too.

I haven’t gotten re-married, been sued or gotten arrested since the last time the Experts convened, so let’s check that off in the ‘win’ column

Work has been absurdly busy, another big project just kicked off for us. But that’s boring and nobody cares; hell, I barely care.

I’ve been continuing to travel as often as I can: I’ve been to Phoenix, El Paso, Durango, and SW Missouri so far this year. Trips to Madison, Las Vegas, and Phoenix (again) in the near future, all topped off by another hop across the pond this summer, this time to London and Edinburgh. Then a quick hitter to NYC in late July, and something (TBD) with my daughter in the fall. I may go broke doing all of this, but am thinking it’s totally worth it!

A. I have interviewed some football players, chatted with a pole vaulter, watched some baseball. I wrote some stories, made some people happy, made a couple mad. I walked with the sun on my face, felt the wind, looked for rain. Said a prayer or two. Tried to get a little sleep.

A. “It’s Spring again! Birds on the Wing Again” What a glorious time of the year. My dear friends from England “Winged” their way here for a visit. I am so blessed with beautiful friends; here, there and everywhere! I think that I have Spring Fever—that’s the name they give the ailment when you’re dizzy with happiness—the world is your “oyster” –your heart aches with joy- Spring –the land is awakening; greening and flowering—one wakes up to birds chattering and singing their morning songs; longer days with warming bright sun; couples walking hand in hand, nuzzling along the Red Rock trails; evenings spent pouring over the deluge of treasure packed Seed catalogues; so exciting being on the UPSIDE OF MOTHER NATURE!

Now I think I know why most of my children were born in the Spring: it was all that clinging to life at the end of summer growth and the “Planting” of hope that “Springs Eternal” for new beginnings and fresh new creations that miraculously appear in the Spring! (That’s my story & I’m sticking to it!)

Neighboring gardeners are all out poking and prodding the soil with anticipation of the yield to be reaped. Ah, thinking of that first warm, luscious, red tomato plucked from your own vine.

Spring makes its own statement, so loud and clear that the gardener seems to be Only One of the instruments—not the Composer. Perhaps Robert Browning said it best:

The year’s at the Spring

And day’s at the morn;

Morning at seven;

The hillside’s dew-pearled

The lark’s on the wing,

The snail’s on the thorn;

God’s in his heaven-

All’s right with the world!

A. “Happy Birthday too you, Happy birthdays too you”, wait, wait, no not that, “We wish you a Merry Christmas”, no, no not now, “Here comes Peter Cotton tail, hopping down”, no,no not that either, “Go tell it on a Mountain”, wait wait wait , “Some say Love it is a” stop, stop, nope, “Hereee’s Jimmy Fal”, quit, stop “Have a great day and may God bless” that enough stop.

Ok what do you want,

A what, A what and where do you think we are going to get that at.

You’re kidding right, how do you want it, you know that won’t be cheap or easy

I ‘ve looked everywhere, under the couch, behind the bushes, clouds are to high

Stars to far away, though I heard there was one hiding behind the Moon

And they sent several to Mars, Spirit and Opportunity rovers used them

I haven’t had one for a while, their hard to get, find and keep, treasures

Precious, J. R. R. Tolkien. He had many, was a master in fact

Most of us just stumble about in our merry way but few go beyond

Happy where we are at, I got dirt under my nails, give Thanks for dirt

Occasionally voyage to the edge and play with  madness, insanity and genius

Empowering our art and creativity and have an original thought

Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful! You Experts are the BEST! I loved all those answers – every one of them made me smile.

Readers, I hope they made you smile, too! You can always leave thoughts for any of the Experts in the comments section. I’ll make sure they hear what you have to say.

It’s so good to have all of you back. Thank you so much for being here. You bring a lot of joy into my life, not only on this blog, but in real life as well. Thank you again!

The Experts will return next Friday. They hope to see you back here.

Let’s move on now to the puzzler.

???Real or Fake???

Last time, I asked if this Schefflera plant was real or fake:

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

Let’s see how you answered:

Claude from the Random Rants and Prickly Plants site wrote, “Real.”

Darryl Cheng, who has this cool houseplant tumblr, wrote, “Definitely a real schefflera!”

Judy Burrier from Ohio wrote, “LOL Definately real !”

Joseph Brenner from Texas wrote, “I will say real, because I’ve never seen yellow leaves on a fake schefflera! (B>{D}”

That’s four votes real, zero votes fake.

What’s the correct answer?

Maybe a closer look will help:

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

REAL! I’m not sure that photo is very helpful, but yes, the Scheff is real. Joseph is right – fake plants don’t usually have flaws, like yellow leaves. When I see yellow leaves on a real plant, I recognize that as the plant’s way of communicating with us. Yellow leaves can mean the plant is saying “hey, too much water,” or “I’m thirsty.” It’s up to us to interpret that communication, but that’s the fun part of loving plants.

Fake plants just sit there and collect dust. Where’s the fun in that?

Well done everyone. You nailed it! I’m not surprised at all – you’ve proven yourselves to be sophisticated plant lovers.

To show my appreciation for you playing, I’d like to award you each the following prizes: One April weekend, a blue ribbon, two fish tanks, above freezing temps, four jackpots, eight salmon wontons, an old-fashioned phone call, 13 cherry blossoms, seven checkered tablecloths, six rosemary sprigs, nine envelopes, five accolades, one tropical paradise, 16 1/2 bonus points, your favorite corner, a feather in your cap, garlic salt, this bouquet of flowers:

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

Five gold stars, one stylish jacket, Silver City, three heartstrings, orange juice, two hugs, 12 more points, one clay trophy, a waterfall, a brand new orchid, three baby raccoons, Adam, one bejeweled crown, four tortillas, Avenida Del Sol, six pencils, curly hair, two munchkins, a grilled cheese sandwich, one high five, headphones, five clouds, Mexican Evening Primrose, three frisbees and six more prizes.

Congratulations! And thanks for playing!

Up next, a new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Are these plants 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, April 23rd, to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winners 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.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Schlumbergera flowers

Just because they’re pretty.

You still have time to guess the current puzzler, in which I asked if this Schefflera plant was real or fake:

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

Leave your best guess in the comments section. The deadline is tonight at midnight MST. I’ll reveal the answer and the winners tomorrow after an all-new Ask the Experts Panel. There will be imaginary prizes galore for all who play. Good luck, and I hope to see you back here soon!

Hello snowbunnies, and happy Friday!

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

Yay for Friday! It’s been a long week, so I’m ready to cap the week off with our Ask the Experts Panel. I’ll have more puzzler action for you as well.

Speaking of the Experts, let’s say hi to them first. 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.

Even though Albuquerque currently has about three inches of snow on the ground, I asked our Experts about spring. Here’s this week’s question:

Q. Have you seen/felt any signs of spring?

Expert Andy, you’re up first as usual.

A. It is as good as spring right now here in Phoenix.  My flowers are blooming in my planters, which should please the readers, and I’m poised to plant my veggie garden this weekend.  The sun is out and the temperatures are in the low to mid 80s right now.  I’ve also seen the hummingbirds back and passing through already which seems to be a better indicator than anything else.  A beautiful green and yellow tinted fellow was buzzing around my ocotillo blooms this morning.  I realize that if you are in the Midwest and East you are hating me about now.  Don’t hate me, get your butts out of there!!!

A. Other than the 60 degree days, the best sign I’ve seen/felt that spring is upon us is that I have unexplained joy in my heart.

A. A small wind found us and it was just warm enough to have come from spring. Pine combs are coming. The sun brought a little heat for a few days running. Pitchers and catchers reported in Arizona and Florida

A.

“Welcome Sweet Springtime, We Greet Thee

With Song!

 

We had to memorize that song for Jr. High Choir! The calendar says Nay but the birds say Oh Yes!

We’ve had spring weather here for the past two weeks while the rest of the country is in a deep freeze.

 

No matter the calendar, Mother Nature is in the know — The sweet little hummers are returning daily. Singing their little song and chasing and wooing. We made a mad dash to the bird store for “nesting “ material. They are at it hot and heavy.

Our little Anna’s, that toughed it out throughout the winter, are so happy to see friends return.

 

All this activity lifts my spirit with the joy of the earth awakening and spreading color, song and beauty everywhere.

 

Hallelujah! The best is yet to come!

A. Book of Cranes art show at ABQ Open Space Visitor Center
Signs of Spring
At least before this week / brrrrr but oh the glorious snow
Sorry Boston

FullSizeRender-8

FullSizeRender-9

Nice answers, everyone! I enjoyed hearing from each of you.

I have my own sign of spring:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, crocuses peeking through the snow

Crocus flowers peeking through the snow.

Readers, what about you? Are you seeing any signs of spring where you are? It’s only about three weeks away, although it can feel much later than that if you’ve got snow piled high where you live.

Thank you Experts, for sharing your thoughts and your time with us. We appreciate it!

That’ll do it for this week’s Panel of Experts. Thanks again to everyone for being here.

Up next, the answer to the current puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Last time, I asked if these Saguaro cactuses were real or fake:

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

Let’s see how you answered:

Claude from the Random Rants and Prickly Plants site wrote, “Concrete cactus. Whooooo hoooo. They’re fake, but they’re fake enough to be kinda cool. And, lets face it, in most of tje country, outs the only way you’re gonna get a saguaro in the yard…”

Wendy13 from New Mexico wrote, “Faaaake 🙂

Martha from the Plowing Through Life site wrote, “They look awfully fake to me!”

Darryl Cheng, who has this cool tumblr houseplant site wrote, “Looks quite fake!”

Judy from Ohio wrote, “Fake”

suzzt53 wrote, “I don’t live around cacti but these are too fakey-perfect to be real/”

growgrow from the GrowGrowGadgetGrow site wrote, “I think the real question is in regards to the two-headed deer-monster sculpture.

I want to say real because why else would you ask… But they’re just so perfect how could they be alive? Its like the Michael Jackson of cacti.”

That’s seven votes fake, zero votes real, and one vote questioning the homeowner’s taste in statues (I’m glad someone else was as creeped out as me by it!).

What’s the correct answer?

Maybe a (slightly) closer view will help:

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

VERY FAKE!!!!

And pretty darn ugly, too. Saguaros only grow in Arizona, so that would’ve been a tip-off. Also, these fake ones are too uniform – real cactus wouldn’t look like that.

Great job everyone! You totally nailed it.

To show you my appreciation for you playing, I’d like to award you each the following prizes: Waning February, five butterflies, three kudos, 13 1/3 bonus points, four sparkles, The Mayflower, two snowmen, your own personal butler, tomato soup, one ball gown, six surprises, nine snowballs, Albert, cash back, three parallel lines, two rainbows, four pillows, seven rubies, a pair of khaki pants, one moonlight serenade, 11 more points, Boise, a glass of milk, 2 o’clock, five honorable mentions, two umbrellas, three spare earlobes, four windowsills, one treasure hunt, lip gloss, a frito pie, and one statue in your likeness.

Congratulations, and thanks so much for playing!

Up next, a new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Is this 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, March 5th, to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winners 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.

Hello Valentinists, and happy Friday, Saturday!

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

Sorry for the delay in this post, I got sidetracked yesterday. Oops – my bad!

Since we’re late, let’s get right to it by saying hi to the 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.

Here’s this week’s question, courtesy of Expert Andy:

Q. What are your favorite songs with “Love” in them?

Expert Andy, you’re up first as usual:

A. I started researching this topic on my own iPhone.  It seems that I have 54 unique songs in my music library with the word “Love” in them.  And so, if I’m to have a favorite, I figured I’d start there.  I was actually surprised to find out that “Love in an Elevator” by Aerosmith is not one of them.  I have the CD but apparently didn’t upload it to iTunes.  Regardless, there are quite a few great “Love” songs in my repertoire.  So, in light of the subject at hand, I’m going to rank my Top 5 from my iTunes library; with commentary of course.

1.  “I Need a Lover” by Johnny Cougar.  “Lover” contains “Love” and therefore it counts.  Damn good, edgy tune from a Hoosier no less.

2.  “Ain’t Talking ’bout Love” by Van Halen.  Just for old time’s sake, give this one a listen in your favorite headphones or jam it in your ride.  Hell, do it on Sat. in honor of St. Valentine’s Day.

3.  “Calling Dr. Love” by Kiss.  “I need your love baby ole so bad, you’re not the only one I’ve ever had.”  With lyrics like this how can you go wrong???

4.  “I’ll Fall in Love Again” by Sammy Hagar.  This is one song that is not only good, but something everyone should turn on after a break-up.  Good therapy and it’ll save you $ from seeing a real therapist.

5.  “Interstate Love Song” by Stone Temple Pilots.  I’m not a big STP fan, but every time I hear this song I have to listen to it intently.  It is a great, catchy little number.

Honorable Mention:  “I’d Lie to You for Your Love” by the Bellamy Brothers.  “And I’d lie to you for your love, and that’s the truth.”  C’mon now, is that not country brilliance or what?!?!?!

A. My favorite songs with the word “love” in the title:

All You Need is Love – Beatles

You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away – Beatles

Best of My Love – Eagles

All Out of Love – Air Supply

Making Love Out of Nothing at All – Air Supply (twice, hellz yeah!)

Higher Love – Steve Winwood

Love in the First Degree – Alabama

Love is Blindness – U2

Your Love – Outfield

The One I Love – David Gray<

This Year's Love – David Gray<

Tunnel of Love – Bruce Springsteen

Bizarre Love Triangle – New Order

Love Will Tear Us Apart – Joy Division

Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town – Kenny Rogers

And I could go on, there is no dearth of songs with the word "love" in the title. Happy Valentine's Day!

A. There’s the beat of International Love, the guitar rift of Sunshine of Your Love.
There is the plaintive When a Man Loves a Woman and the earnest Can’t Help Falling in Love. There is the simplicity of Only Love Can Break Your Heart and She Loves You (yeah, yeah, yeah). And a final plea: Come and Get Your Love.

A.

It’s Valentines Day and Love is in the air—everywhere.  Love is a mystery.  It takes many forms —-Song titles tell many tales.  See if you can imagine
what love story each paragraph tells:
 
I’m in the Mood for Love
The look of Love
Get me to the Church on Time!
Baby Love
 
Crazy, Crazy for Loving you
What kind of Fool Am I?
Breaking up is hard to do
Midnight Train to Georgia
 
When I Fall in Love
Puppy Love/My Guy
Save the Last Dance for Me 
 
Strangers in the Night
I’ve Got You Babe
Will You Love Me Tomorrow?
 
Are You Lonesome Tonight
I Can’t Stop Loving You
My Heart Will Go On
Unforgettable
 
This Guy’s in Love With You
Someone to Watch Over Me
The Glory of Love
 
Love to you and happy Valentine’s Day.

A.

I Love My Truck,

I Love My Dog
I Love My Beer

Billy Currington – People Are Crazy

The beer song  “I Love My Beer” Song – By Adam Felton

I guess this is one of my favorite Love classic’s

  1. Lyrics for The Rose By Bette Midler

o    Some say love, it is a river, that drowns the tender reed

Some say love, it is a razor, that leaves your soul to bleed

Some say love, it is a hunger, an endless aching need

I say love, it is a flower, and you, its only seed

o    Its the heart afraid of breaking, that never learns to dance

Its the dream afraid of waking, that never takes a chance

Its the one that won’t be taking, that cannot seem to give

It’s the one afraid of dying, that never learns to live

o    When the night has been too lonely and the road has been too long

And you think that love is only for the lucky and the strong

Just remember in the winter, far beneath the bitter snow

Lies the seed, that with the sun’s love in the spring becomes the rose.

My we all find a little love and peace in every day

Smile when you can and even when you can’t

Haha, those answers cracked me up! You are all wonderful! And your song choices rocked!

Love to each of you, and Happy Valentine’s Day!

Thank you so much for being here!

That does it for our Experts Panel. The Experts will return next week. They hope to see you back here.

Up next, the current puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

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

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, are these flowers real or fake?

Let’s see how you answered:

mr_subjunctive from the Plants Are the Strangest People site wrote, “Well, it’s not all one single plant, but my guess is that the individual components of the display were all alive at one time.”

Claude from the Random Rants and Prickly Plants site wrote, “It looks like a very real and extremely expensive floral arrangment in a hotel buffet.”

Darryl Cheng, who has this cool houseplant tumblr wrote, “Lovely schlumbergera! For the plant puzzler – I’ll guess real but it’s really hard to see any details!”

Suzzt53 wrote, “I really truly hope they’re real! Fabulous designer and wonderful blooms – thanks for sharing, no matter what : )”

That’s two votes real, one vote for real at one time, and one vote for hoping they’re real.

What’s the correct answer?

Let’s take a closer look:

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

Unfortunately, that’s not much closer for you to see that the flowers are indeed FAKE! I should’ve taken a better close-up for you. If it’s any consolation, I had to ask if the bouquet was real or fake, because the flowers looked so nice. Usually I’m anti-fake plants and flowers because they look so bad, but these flowers looked fabulous.

I think to make that big of a display with real flowers would’ve been cost prohibitive, even on a tropical island. It was enormous.

So lookee there – I stumped you all! And I wasn’t even trying to stump you! So, hooray for me!

Even though you guessed incorrectly – it was a very difficult puzzler – I still appreciate that you played. So to show you my gratitude, I’d like you each to have the following prizes: One Valentine’s Day weekend, a bouquet of spring flowers, three waves, six congratulatory sentiments, 11 1/2 bonus points, four cupid’s arrows, a lagoon, two flannel shirts, one all-expenses paid vacation to Valentine’s Day, seven polka dots, calamari, 23 Valentine’s cards, a winning smile, the Smoky Mountains, two lipsticks, one book signing, four muskrats, high altitude, 14 SweetTart candies, a set of spare ankles, courage of conviction, one sailboat, dark purple, five chocolate-covered strawberries, one sculpture of your likeness, four love songs, an angel’s wings, two table lamps, a ceremony in your honor, champagne, three ponytails and tangerine juice.

Congratulations, and thanks for playing!

Up next, a new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Are these Saguaro cactuses real or fake:

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

Haha, just have fun with it!

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, February 19th, to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winners 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.

Hello holidayers, and happy Friday!

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

Er, it’s actually Saturday not Friday. I’m going to do that thing again where I post late because I got too busy to post on time. Sorry about that!

Let’s get straight to the action. Hi Experts!

 

“Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiii Liza!”

You’re all 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.

The Experts are about to take a break from this blog so they can enjoy the Thanksgiving Day holiday. Before they leave, I asked them to share their thoughts. Here’s this week’s question:

Q. Do you have any thoughts or stories you’d like to share before you break for the holiday?

Expert Andy Williams, you’re up first as usual:

A. My thoughts for the holidays are;

1.  Don’t overindulge on Thanksgiving.  You’ll feel terrible if you do.  Eat small portions and enjoy the leftover turkey and pumpkin pie.
2.  Make personal stuff for people if you are going to get them a gift at all.  Appeal to something you know they enjoy.  It means a lot more.
3.  Make your own Christmas cards, and personalize them.  If you are sending something to someone that is not personalized, why bother?
4.  Make it a point to contact someone important to you and tell them what they mean to you.
5.  Volunteer and give to those less fortunate ahead of all of the above items.
6.  Celebrate the beauty of a gridlock in Washington.  There’s nothing more stimulating than keeping the government out of things.
Happy Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas to all.  I will miss you.
———————
Expert Tim Thackaberry is normally up next, but he’s unavailable this week. Let’s admire his adorableness:

And move on to Expert EZ Ed Johnson. EZ, what do you say, fine sir?

A. There are wars all over the globe and debates over immigration, but the true crisis that needs our attention is the great chocolate shortage. Invade the Ivory Coast and make it the 51st state. Build a chocolate pipeline. Throw a blockade around China to prevent them from importing all the chocolate. Time to unite America.

——————-

Haha, that was funny, EZ.

Expert Dottie is normally up next, but she also is unavailable this week. Let’s admire how cute she is:

And move on to Expert Lewis Casey. Lewis?

A.

The alarm awakes me, ok, ok I heard you, stupid *$#@&%* machine, it is warm under the covers.

Actually it is warm throughout the house compared to the cold outside,

my love greets me with “Good Morning” as she gets out of bed, dresses  and goes downstairs for her morning coffee and cigarette.

I lay there for a few minutes more enjoying my comfort pretending I don’t have to pee.

The shower is hot, the water plentiful but I don’t need to be there long to be clean.

My clothing clean, my shoes shine and fit well,

I grab my lunch from the fridge and another piece of fruit from the wooden bowl sent home year ago by a young man from a jungled land.

I lock our house door and get in to my loves car, which she has warmed for poor little me,

At the bus stop she kisses me goodbye “Good day “ I scurry to the arriving bus, show the driver my City Transit pass that grants me free passage,

I sit and wonder about what the day may bring, but I have purpose, goals, a job.

My city vehicles takes me here and there, I speak with other city employees dispersing my knowledge, wisdom, my brands of BS,

Always with theirs and the public’s safety and well-being being my main concern and duty

The NM sun shines as it works its way into the Western sky and the wind is cold and has  sharp bite to it,

I have enlighten enough, bestowed my grace on many the workday winding down, I make my way back to the city parking garage.

The man on the side of the road his face hidden because of the sun behind him, but the letters on his sign read simply

Homeless, Hungry, Cold

Vet

God Bless

I go around several block to get back there and along the way another man another sign graces the road side

There is a Arby’s nearby I stop and get two bags with a burgers, fries, pie and a bottles of water

I walk the block back to the man whose sign I did not read, I call him from across the street, the going home traffic is heavy, he dashes across, for that is his life give him a bag, a water and three dollars, Thank you man, Thank you God Bless

I head back for the 1st man and his read sign, I cross the street and hand him a bag,

He looks at it, he looks at me, he looks at it again and takes it

I shake his hand it is icy cold just like the icy wind, he gives me a hug

Saying “Thank you, Thank you, Thank you like I had just given him a gold brick

God Bless You,

He already has, I should have given him my gloves.

 

Be Thankful for our blessings for how easily they can be gone

Happy Family and Friend Together Day

Wow, outstanding, gentlemen. Lewis, Andy, thanks for the reminders. Good to have. EZ, that made me laugh out loud. I enjoyed reading all of your entries, thanks fellas!

So that’ll do it for this week’s Panel of Experts. The Experts will return in a couple of weeks after their much-deserved holiday break. They hope to see you back here.

Up next, the answer to the current puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Last week, I asked if this plant was real or fake:

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

Let’s see how you answered:

Claude from the Random Rants and Prickly Plants site wrote, “Its real. And these things grow in the yard down here.”

Martha from the Plowing Through Life site wrote, “I’m going to guess real.”

Darryl Cheng, who has this cool houseplant tumblr, wrote, “For the puzzler: it looks real to me. If I win, could I request some virtual cuttings of your red schlumbergera?”

Liz from Jemez wrote, “Real”

That’s four votes real, zero votes fake.

So what’s the correct answer?

Maybe a closer look will help:

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

It’s real! And really pretty! Syngonium plants, or ‘Arrowhead’ plants, offer a nice touch of green, are reliable growers, and I think they are beautiful. This one in particular would shame any fake version of it.

Why waste money on fake plants, when you can have the real deal?

Claude, I didn’t realize Syngoniums grew outside in New Orleans – that’s cool! Darryl, you can absolutely request virtual cuttings from another beautiful plant, a Schlumbergera with red blooms. Coming your way in seconds.

Great job everyone. You all nailed it! I’m not a bit surprised.

To show my appreciation for you playing, I’d like to award you each the following prizes: One last weekend before Thanksgiving, today’s top spot, four green lights, beef stroganoff, three clues to your future, one monument to you, Gallup, three oceanside views, 13 1/3 bonus points, a shoe shine, virtual cuttings of a red-flowered Schlumbergera, 2nd Street, your weight in hugs, one paint-by-numbers set, salad tongs, two-thirds improvement over yesterday, 42 basil seeds, one invincibility shield, Rio Galisteo, four dimples, one shiny finish, five captivating smiles, cranberry juice, one fortress of love, a musical written about you, youthfulness, seven shooting stars, one fleece jacket, a bowl of granola, two high-fives, Janice, one healthy Syngonium plant, four day dreams, a baby hippo, feta cheese, six paper clips, a spectacular sunset, a knit hat, six pledges of devotion, laughter, a new microwave, four ceramic plates, and a pair of boots.

Congratulations, and thanks for playing!

Up next, a new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

We’ll start with a close-up this time. Is this tree 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, November 27th, to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) next Friday. The prizes may be imaginary but the link to your site and the glory of winning are oh-so-real.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Schlumbergera photos

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Schlumbergera photos

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Schlumbergera photos

Because I can’t resist how pretty they are! They make up for winter being, you know, wintery.

In other news, you still have time to guess the current puzzler, in which I asked if this plant was real or fake:

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

Shouldn’t be too tough. Leave your best guess in the comments section. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) tomorrow after an all-new Ask the Experts Panel. There will be imaginary prizes galore for all who play.

I hope to see you back here!

Cosmos flower photos never get old! (Well, not for me, anyway.)

Good To Grow, Liza'a photos, Cosmos Flowers

So pretty! Especially with the blue Morning Glories in the mix.

If you haven’t ventured a guess in the current plant puzzler, you still have time to do so. Here’s the puzzler, in which I asked if this plant was real or fake:

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

It’s a tricky one this week! If anyone who has already guessed has second thoughts, you’re welcome to change your vote – I don’t mind!

The deadline is tonight at midnight MST (that’s 2am EST). Leave your best guess in the comments section. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) tomorrow. Imaginary prizes will abound for all who play, whether your guess is correct or not. It’s a win-win for everyone!

The Experts will return next Friday, along with more puzzler action. Yay! The Experts are coming back! They’re looking forward to it, and so am I!

Hello summerteers, and happy Friday!

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

Yay for Friday! We’ve been waiting patiently all week for your arrival. Thank you for finally getting here. Friday is the day we roll out our Panel of Experts, and our puzzler fun. Let’s get the festivities started by saying hi to the 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.

This week’s question is pretty straightforward, and because I was curious. Here it is:

Q. What scares you?

Expert Andy, you’re up first as usual:

A. Hello again, from China.  On my way home today.  Yeah!!!  Onward….

What scares me is being in the woods alone, on the way to the outhouse in the middle of the night in the Canadian wilderness on our own fishing island.
And coming across a rattlesnake on my many adventures in the Arizona desert or high country.
And getting on a plane in China or Taiwan, for a 13 hr. journey at 33,000 feet, across a large body of water, part of which is within missile distance of a nut job North Korean dictator.
And the ire of an angry woman.

A. Everything. Absolutely everything. Here is a short list: failure, success, heights, rabid dogs, enclosed spaces, drowning, loss of my mental faculties, earthquakes, dying young, living too long, and about 42 assorted fears specifically for my daughter.

I could go on…which also scares me.

A. I fear a phone call in the middle of the night, losing an appreciation of words, not enough sleep, too much sleep, forgetting certain faces, not being able to laugh.

———Expert Dottie is off celebrating her birthday so she’s not available this week. Let’s admire her adorableness:

And move on to Expert Lewis. Lewis, what say you, fine sir?

A.

What scares you?

Nothing and everything, As a young child death visited my family several times, I did not understand but they never came back

So dying was not something I feared, several time God has watched over this fool’s follies and little children

 

I do not walk with my head covered because the sky is falling, the sky is falling,

But I do look to the sky for strange large objects that should not be there

There are places in our country  where people do fear the sky

For monster come from it and have no mercy as they churn the earth

These monster do hold a great pucker factor in my life,

I lived under that sky and have walked, aided and awed at the power that caused the churned earth

I did not like it

Now I live under Red Sky’s that are not as angry,

Here we have rushing water that should be respected and given a wide berth but not feared

 

You know fear and anger are brothers they are almost always together when someone needs them least

I had a great fit of madness between my oldest son and me

Something stupid said caused my careful image of self-discipline, self-control, my shiny armor came apart

Leaving a screaming lunatic ranting and raging at the world,

My son was just the trigger

I was angry at his stupid words for they were a challenge to my order

I was angry at myself for my loss of self-control, I’m usually so cool, calm and collected

I was angry at not having more hair, less girth, deeper pockets

I was angry at the Republicans for being so stupid

I was angry at the Democrats’ for being just as stupid

I was angry at the unfairness in the world, the greedy, low or no morals, the politicians,

who work for they own cause and to hell with the rest of us

I was angry at the lawyers who have sold their soul to  the demons

I was angry at the demons who cast they nets wide and all of the fools within

I was angry at the homeless, why do they wonder the streets have not I given them enough

I was angry at the druggie, alcoholics, dopers and smokers and their damn cigarette butts

I was angry at the young woman crossing the street with her white cane,

I may not have her courage and fortitude as she made her way

I was angry that children, elderly and animals suffer at the hands of those who should be loving them

I was angry that I cannot fix some problems

I went home and stewed in my self-pity for an hour or two more

Woo is me,

 

I am blessed God gave me another morning another day, I left the anger in yesterday

The problems still are there, I went to my son and said I’m sorry for my being an ass

He said ditto, we gave each other a hug, said I love you

For family helps hold the fear at bay

Next time I will know my armor has some rust a crack or two, I’ll step back from the edge

Smile at the Red Sky

 

Those are remarkable answers, everyone. Thank you for sharing. It’s a question that shows your vulnerabilities, so I appreciate the honest feedback. The world can be a big scary place! Things like phone calls in the night, the loss of our minds and anger are hard – our fears are valid. But I agree with Lewis – love helps. It’s important not to walk around in fear, but to focus on the more loving aspects of life.

Thanks fellas, again for sharing. I enjoyed reading your thoughts.

Readers, I’ll pose the question to you, too – what scares you? Use the comments section to share your fears. I’d be interested to hear them.

That’ll do it for this week’s Panel of Experts. The Experts will return next Friday for one more panel before breaking for the Labor Day weekend. They look forward to seeing you back here.

Ok, now let’s move on to the current puzzler.

???Real or Fake???

Last week, I asked if this Ocotillo plant was 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, “A real live ocotillo! Way cool.”

Joseph Brenner from Texas wrote, “Real ocotillo. Real agave. Really gorgeous!!(B>{D}”

That’s two votes real, zero votes fake.

What’s the correct answer?

Let’s take a wider look:

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

It is real! And it’s beautiful! I love Ocotillos – they’re so interesting. And they have these funky orange blooms in the early summer (obviously this one isn’t blooming now, I just took this photo a couple of weeks ago, well past its bloom time). Real plants are always prettier than fake ones.

Well done, guys! You nailed it. Not surprising at all!

To show my appreciation for you playing, I’d like to award you each the following prizes: Several more August nights, one scenic byway, a queen-sized bed, 27 purrs, Placitas, the edge off, 14 northern lights, 15 southern nights, one baby moose, seven shooting stars, nine bonus points, Donna, your own personal choir, six touchdowns, 11 stripes, three fiestas, one spare earlobe, less fear, salted caramel ice cream, a vacation to yesterday, one coffee table, a bouquet of white roses, four peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, one manicure, a plate of french fries, one bronze statue in your likeness, red curtains, 13 more points, a denim jacket, one round of applause, and my hearty thanks.

Congratulations! Thanks so much for playing!

Up next, the new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Is this 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 28th, 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.

Thanks so much for reading this post!

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About Me

Hi! My name is Liza. Welcome to my blog and thanks for visiting! I'm a Midwestern gal now living in Arizona, after many years of living in and owning a plant care business in New Mexico.

Plants are living, breathing creatures, and if they're indoor plants, they are 100% dependent on human care. They cannot water themselves.

I can beautify your home, office, or patio with plants and flowers. I have 13 years of experience growing plants, and friendships.

Please let me know if you have questions or if you would like help with your plants or garden. You can reach me at lizatheplantlady (at) gmail (dot) com or follow me on Twitter, Lizawheeler7.

All photos are mine unless otherwise noted. All content is also entirely my hard work. If you'd like to use any content or photos, all you have to do is ask. If you take without asking, you are a thief. And thieves suck. So don't suck. We have a deal? Good.

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