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Hello superstars (ooh la la, that’s what you are), and happy Friday!

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

[Insert drumroll here.]

They’rrrrre baaaaaack!

(From left to right, that’s Tina, Thack, EZ, Dottie and Lewis. If you’d like to know more about them, please click here.)

It’s Friday. It’s August. It’s steamy.

Everyone’s beloved Experts are back.

Most of them anyway.

While the Experts were on their July hiatus, I found out that one of the esteemed Experts would not be coming back in August.

Boo!

Due to work-related reasons, Expert Tina Quintana will no longer be joining us on Fridays.

Double boo!

Let’s take a look at her adorable sunflowerness:

Tina, I would like to thank you for your Expert services here on Fridays. More importantly, I’d like to thank you for all your years of friendship. We’ve had each other’s backs for a long time, and I hope that never changes. You’ve been a stellar colleague, and I respect and admire the work you do.

You will be missed. A lot.

By all of us.

We wish you nothing but the best in your new endeavors.

As sad as I am to see you go, it comforts me that He Who Takes Your Place is a dear, dear friend.

Without further ado, I’d like to introduce our newest Expert, the venerable Mr. Andy Williams. Here he is in his sunflowery glory:

Pretty darn cute, Andy!

Andy and I are from the same small Indiana town, I figure I’ve known him since I was 13 or 14. He is an exceptional human being. Compassionate. Intelligent. Kind. Motivated. Funny. Patriotic. Accomplished. Warm. Good hearted.

No one else even came to mind when I thought about who the replacement Expert would be. Andy popped into my head and it was all over.

My worry was that he would be too busy traveling around the globe to make appearances here, and he may be at times, but he’s agreed to try. And for that I thank him. I’m very grateful he’s on board, and I’m delighted to introduce him to my readers.

So, let’s get this show on the road, shall we?

Because of the July hiatus, I decided to ask my Experts the following question:

Q. Please tell us about your August state of mind.

Expert Andy, here’s your platform:

A. Hello everyone, hello world!  I’m vying for 1/100th of the competence that Expert Tina added to this panel.  If I hit that, my goal will be accomplished.  Plus, she’s so much prettier in a sunflower suit than I am.  I can’t stomach the thought each week of bees landing on my face and “pollinating” it.  So, to participate on this panel I’m going to have to envision a world without bees, but with all of the good things that they do being accomplished by something more peaceful.
Anyhow, back to the question this week.
My August state of mind is that of tiredness and hope.  I’m damn tired and cranky after 60 days of summer hell in Phoenix already with only about 45 more to go.  The hope, then, is that 45 days will be accurate and that this relentless heat will be suppressed by some predictable state of the earth headed back toward its other axis.  Still spinning, I trust.  I also find that August is probably the month that people are most cranky like me.  Kids heading back to school, parents getting them ready, hot, humid weather, your team out of the baseball playoff picture.  I mean, there’s a lot to be cranky about.  Besides that, there is only 1 more holiday until Thanksgiving, and that’s Labor Day.  But August also brings the reality, not hope, that NFL football camps have started.  And that is a good thing!  Which makes me look forward to cooler temperatures, football jerseys, Sunday’s wasted in front of a large TV, and my smoker sitting outside wafting its work into my back screen door.  But to cap it off, I made a list of hopes:
*I hope that Andrew Luck has a record rookie season for TD/Int ratio, with TDs > 20.
*I hope the Colts play some defense……finally.
*I hope the referees call holding on ALL of the misfits trying to block Dwight Freeney!  For once!!!
*I hope the Colts make the playoffs.
*I hope for politicians to pull their head of their collective asses and do things that are right for America, and not for themselves.  The simplest concept unexecuted each year in America, I find.
*I hope terrorists get vaporized and that more peace is at hand.
*I hope the Diamondbacks make the playoffs and pass the Giants and Dodgers in Aug.
*I hope I will find a new favorite beer.
*I hope I get to see Liza, Mary, and Landy in NM.
*I hope the “Dream Team” crushes its opponents by 30 points/game on average.
*I hope that my parents and family find excellent health and happiness to prepare them for Fall and Winter.
Adios Amigos!

Well that’s certainly a nice way to score a giant W in your win column. Right off the bat, folks. Andy, you killed your debut performance. I hope your wishes come true, too!

No suspense there, of course I was going to call his debut a win because I’m so happy to have him here. Great job, Andy! Welcome!

I’ll have loads of imaginary prizes for you and all the Experts at the end of the panel.

Let’s move on now to Expert Tim Thackaberry, also a great friend and super Expert. Thack, here’s the question to you:

Q. Please tell us about your August state of mind.

A.First of all, it’s great to be back. Thank you, Liza, for bringing back this learned panel o’ experts!

My August state of mind, eh? Probably the same as my usual state of mind: awaiting another chronic impending disaster, searching for the dark cloud in every silver lining, looking gift horses in the mouth, filled with pessimism and massive existential despair. Staggering under the weight of the stark, unyielding truth of the human condition, alone in a universe without pity.
 
Nah, I’m doing great. My daughter is a marvel, work is good, and the sun is shining. It’s a great month to be alive!

That’s awesome, Thack. You’re welcome, I’m glad you could come back with us, it’s always a pleasure.

Thank you for making us laugh. I’m gonna call that an easy win for you this week. Congratulations!

Expert EZ Ed Johnson, welcome back, fine sir. You’re up next in the lineup:

Q. Please tell us about your August state of mind.

A. It’s been the same since I was a boy — with a shades of truth shifting slightly with age. I look forward to the fall, to the cooling of nights, to football and the World Series, to shorter days and sunsets. Yet, I have a part of me that does not want to let go of summer, days of lesser responsibility and high suns. Warmth slipping away.

I’m right there with ya, EZ. I love summertime, but fall is exciting, I’m looking so forward to it.

Well played, that’s another correct answer for you. Congrats, and thanks for being here!

Everyone’s favorite octogenerian, the lovely and talented Dottie Correll, graces us with her presence again this week. Expert Dottie, here’s the question to you:

Q. Please tell us about your August state of mind.

A.  AUGUST :  Indeed is starting in a most “au—gust” way! Besides having a shattered left humorous and being the month of my natal celebration, I received an email that blew me away!   One of my most favorite persons in the whole world –my most adored Songster, balladster and “music-man” sent little ol’ me, a many paragraphed, touching message.  After all these years, — what joy! What rapture!   Whoa, wait a minute, I just Read paragraph 3 — there is more than one? Another charmer with the same name?   Is this possible?  YES, DOROTHY, THERE IS ANOTHER —“ANDY WILLIAMS”!

Oh my! Well, Welcome aboard, “Hoosier Andy Williams”!   You have a delightful way of “coining a phrase” – you have a lot to live up too and I do hope you enjoy “living it up” with, we humble Friday Bloggers!                                                 

Hahahaha, oh Dottie, how I love you so. You and the new Andy are gonna get along famously, I can tell. I’m sorry he’s not the other Andy Williams, but I trust you’ll find he’s equally as entertaining.

Another easy W for you, sweet lady. Excellent work! Thanks so much for being here, arm sling and all.

Let’s move on to Expert Lewis Casey, always a joy on this panel. Expert Lewis, what say you?

Q. Please tell us about your August state of mind.

A. My garden grows, I still draw a breath, the sun shines, the rains fall (but oh so little rain, Please God may we have another) I’m still employed and hope to continue be, the world is not quite on fire as it was in June,
Unfortunately Madmen, insanity and evil still reach out to touch our lives, lies and untruths fill the airways with much more await us til the moment of truth in Nov.
 But all is not lost, Women tumble and fly, Men run, swim and reach for the sky in hopes for gold, pride of county and self rule the day and the human race shines and pats its self on the back for a job well done, babies still suckle at their mothers breast and rest in contentment, children laugh and play just for the joy of being a child, lovers walk hand in hand, elders sit and chat in enjoyment and the pleasure of another s’ company, the moon shines full in its dance of wax and wan, Families still gather to honor their own for another year of life, love and for smiles which can rule the day and a frown darken it,
My garden grow, I still draw a breath, and a smile graces my face as I greet the world here take this one I have more.
Welcome Andy, Heal and Be Well Dottie, Good by Tina

Ah, I’ve missed you and your unique language, Lewis. I could listen to you talk all day. Welcome back.

We’ll chalk that up as yet another win for the impressive Expert Lewis. Congrats, and well done!

What a panel! What amazing Experts! Thank you all for being here, I really appreciate it!

For playing this week, I’d like to award each of you the following prizes: 10,000 extra credit points, watermelon, a pretend picnic getaway, four tambourines, one standing ovation, a bejeweled hedgehog, three salutes, and an A+.

In addition to your prizes, I’d also like to award each of you the following epithet to use for the weekend: The Most Plantastic Expert in Life, Morality and Compassion in the Known Universe and Three-Quarters of the Way Into the Unknown Universe, Too. So for example, Andy, if you’re at a Diamondbacks game this weekend and you want to introduce yourself to some people sitting nearby, you should say, “Hi, I’m Andy Williams The Most Plantastic Expert in Life, Morality and Compassion in the Known Universe and Three-Quarters of the Way Into the Unknown Universe, Too.” I’m sure they’ll think that’s totally awesome.

That does it for this week’s panel of Experts. The Experts will return in exactly one week.

Let’s move on to last week’s puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Last week, cheerful blogger Ivynettle of Letters and Leaves, submitted the following puzzler, in which she asked if this Echeveria was real or fake:

Let’s see how you answered:

Steph from Indianapolis wrote, “Aww! so cute and real.”

Charlie Hebert from Misty Fields wrote, “Hmmm.. at the risk of losing my Cinnamon Rolls, I’m gonna go with REAL this week.. and only because of the minor scarring and the planting medium.”

Ivynettle, Greatest Queen Submitter of Puzzlers in All the Land, wrote, “Well, booh, that means I can’t play this week! ;-)

Martha from Plowing Through Life wrote, “I’m going to go with real. Very pretty, too.”

Tom, now from the Midwestern Jungle, formerly of Theatrum Botanicum, wrote “Real!”

Claude from Random Rants and Prickly Plants wrote, “yeah its real.”

Alissa Harper from Wonderland wrote, “Awww, real.”

Terrence from Dynamic Gardening wrote, “This succulent plant looks very happy and very real.”

That’s unanimous! Seven votes real, zero votes fake.

So what’s the correct answer? Maybe this wider shot will shed some light on that:

You guys are super smart – it’s real! And very pretty! Fake plants are never that gorgeous.

Good job to all of you – you’re all winners!

Steph, who I’ve known about as long or longer than I’ve known Andy, and an Expert in her own right, you’re first with the correct answer, which makes you the Bestest, Dreamiest, Firstest, Premierest, Grand Champion of the Houseplant Blog World. Congrats! You may multiply all the prizes by three popsicles.

For playing this week, I’d like to award each of you the following prizes: Hopscotch, two lickety splits, 14 bragging rights, a coupon good for one voucher, delicious granola, an imaginary tent, four small fries, an echo and a woowoo. Congratulations! Thanks so much for playing!

Up now, a new puzzler for you.

???Real or Fake???

Also submitted by Ivy, she wants to know if this carnation is real or fake:

Think you know the answer, smartyplants? Leave your best guess in the comments section. You have until midnight next Thursday, August 9th, MST (that’s 2a.m. EST) to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) after next week’s panel of Experts. Remember, the prizes may be imaginary but the link to your site and the glory of winning are oh-so-real.

Just a reminder, you still have time to guess last week’s puzzler, in which Ivynettle of Letters and Leaves would like to know if this Echeveria is real or fake:

You have until midnight tonight MST (that’s 2am EST) to submit your best guess in the comments section or on my facebook wall. Imaginary prizes will abound for all who play.

I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) after an all-new Ask the Experts panel manana.

We have a very special Friday post lined up for you. Nothing like this has every happened with our Experts Panel. We’re going (tearfully) to say goodbye to one long-time panelist, and hello (joyfully) to a brand-new one. I love all my Experts so I never want any of them to leave, but sometimes life gets in the way. It helps that the new panelist is one of my favorite people on the planet.

I hope you’ll join us manana, I’ll explain everything.

Hello sshsshsshsshsshsshsshazamers, happy Friday! Yay for Friday!

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

As my regular readers know, our beloved Experts are on a much deserved hiatus for the month of July. So let’s admire their adorableness:

And move on to the puzzler action:

???Real or Fake???

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

Let’s see how you answered:

Charlie Hebert wrote, “FAKE! Doesn’t seem as if the plant is near any light source, and seems to be in some sort of professional setting.”

Steph from Indianapolis wrote, “Gotta go with Fake this week.”

Carol wrote, “Auuuughhhhhh! Fake.”

Ivynettle from Letters and Leaves wrote, “Looks pretty fake!.”

Martha from Plowing Through Life wrote, “Looks pretty fake to me!”

Terrence from Dynamic Gardening wrote, “This plant is fake or faux that looks like its been trapped in a department store for quite some time.”

Carol wrote, “It sure is not a pretty one…it could be real and very neglected! But my final answer? Fake.”

Tom from Theatrum Botanicum wrote, “Fake.”

Lilia from KOBtv wrote, “Fake.

That’s nine votes fake, zero votes real.

What’s the correct answer? Maybe a narrower view will shed some light:

It’s fake, and very ugly. This was being sold at a crafts store. Who would want to buy some overpriced junky brown and green fabric plant is beyond me.

You all nailed it this week! Good job everyone!

Charlie, you were first with a correct answer, which means you’re the best winner. You’ve earned the title of Premierest, Numero Unoest, Plantastic Grandest Champion of the Houseplant Blog Universe and Around. You may multiply all the prizes by six cinnamon rolls. Congratulations!

For playing this week, I’d like each of you to have the following prizes: Three shellacked eggshells, Terrificness, 17 bragging rights, two joy sticks, an all expense paid imaginary trip to Hawaii, one dainty hamster, buglemania, four free throws, and a platter of tacos. Thanks so much for playing!

Up next, the new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

All the way from Austria, this week’s puzzler was submitted by Ivynettle of Letters and Leaves. She wants to know, is this Echeveria real or fake?

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

Hello hookoochabooboos, happy Friday!

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

As my regular readers know, our beloved Experts are on a much deserved hiatus for the month of July. So let’s admire their adorableness:

And move on to the puzzler action:

???Real or Fake???

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

Let’s see how you answered:

Vastpalette wrote,“real and refreshing after last week’s faker… o.o”

Martha from Plowing Through Life wrote, “This is a nice, real pothos.”

Ivynettle from Letters and Leaves wrote, “Real.”

Tom from Theatrum Botanicum wrote, “Real”

Terrence from Dynamic Gardening wrote, “This pothos plant is real! They are one of my favorites too.”

That’s five votes real, zero votes fake.

So what’s the correct answer? Maybe a wider view will shed some light:

Real! These were photographed at Osuna Nursery, fresh off the truck. I doubt you could get that kind of marbling on a fake plant.

Congratulations! You’re all winners! Alissa, you were first with the correct answer, so that makes you the best answerer. You’ve earned the title of Coolest, Firstest, Trophyness, Terrificiest, Most Grand Champion of the Houseplant Blog Universe and Beyond. Congrats! You may multiply all the prizes by six scented dryer sheets.

You’re all winners, in life and on this site. For playing, I’d like you each to have the following prizes: Four walnuts, 16 extra credit points, good posture, three blind mice, a pretend tree house, a cup of basil, two monkey cheeks and applause.

Congratulations again, and thanks everyone for playing.

Up next is the new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Is this plant real or fake?

Think you know the answer, smartyplants? Leave your best guess in the comments section. You have until midnight next Thursday, July 26th, MST (that’s 2a.m. EST) to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) next Friday. Remember, the prizes may be imaginary but the link to your site and the glory of winning are oh-so-real.

Hello kiitenketeers, happy Friday!

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

As my regular readers know, our beloved Experts are on a much deserved hiatus for the month of July. So let’s admire their adorableness:

And move on to the puzzler action:

???Real or Fake???

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

Let’s see how you answered:

Carol wrote, “Fake. It has that fabric type look and it is in a big store, like a box store, where they often sell all kinds of phony baloney “garden” stuff probably from China. If I am wrong, I’ll be surprised. But it wouldn’t be the first time- tee hee!
Stay cool everyone!”

mr_subjunctive from Plants Are the Strangest People wrote, “I’m going to go with fake, though I’m less sure than usual.”

Ivynettle from Letters and Leaves wrote, “Tough one, but I’m going to say fake. Too much different stuff crammed together in a too small container. Also, the small variegated leaves don’t like anything I know, and the larger fronds look like a cross between some kind of palm tree and a hard fern.
Unless the Dieffenbachia is real, and the rest is fake. There seems to be a yellow leaf there. Surely they’re not making fake dead leaves?”

Tom from Theatrum Botanicum wrote, “Fake? Is that a fake dumbcane flower?”

Vastpalette wrote,“fake”

Charlie wrote, “I’m gonna go with fake here.. Too much going on, and too symetrical.”

Martha from Plowing Through Life wrote, “Okay, I’m not 100% sure on this one, but I’m going to vote fake. I may be wrong, but it just looks fake to me.”

Steph from Indianapolis wrote, “Yep it’s a wannabe”

There’s some trepidation, but ultimately, it’s eight votes fake, zero votes real.

What’s the correct answer? Let’s take a closer look and see if that helps:

*Weeps*

That’s a fake brown leaf on a fake plant.

*Weeps more*

A fake brown leaf on a fake plant.

Not only that! But look at how much it costs:

We’re doomed, people. This how low humanity has sunk, and a sure sign of the end of civilization.

Two hundred dollars so you can prove to your friends that your black thumb is flawed? The brown leaf is proof that you’re doing something wrong to your fake plant? Or is that supposed to be a naturally occurring death of a lower fake leaf?

*Head hurts*

There are no winners here, except for the manufacturers.

I’m gonna put aside my anger at them, and at Hobby Lobby for selling them, so I can congratulate all of you for guessing correctly. Good job everyone!

Carol, you were the first with the correct answer, making you the best winner this week. That means you’ve earned the title of Premierest, Greatest, Most Exceptional, Plantastic, Firstest Champion of the Houseplant Blog Universe. Congrats! You may multiply all the prizes by two baby lotions.

Everyone’s a winner this week. For playing, I’d like to award you the following prizes: A pretend donkeykong, three willows, fruit, 13 bragging rights, four dance steps, an imaginary color, two thumbs up, and one hamster’s wheel.

In addition to your prizes, I’d also like each of you to use the following epithet for the weekend: Prevailer of Justice and Pursuiter of the Eradication of Fake Plants and Other Ugliness on Earth As Well As Being an Awesome Person.

So for example, mr_subjunctive, if you hang out at the pool this weekend and meet someone, you should introduce yourself as mr_subjunctive Prevailer of Justice and Pursuiter of the Eradication of Fake Plants and Other Ugliness on Earth As Well As Being an Awesome Person. I’m sure that won’t be awkward at all.

Congratulations, and thanks everyone for playing.

Up next is the new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Is this plant real or fake?

Think you know the answer, smartyplants? Leave your best guess in the comments section. You have until midnight next Thursday, July 19th, MST (that’s 2a.m. EST) to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) next Friday. Remember, the prizes may be imaginary but the link to your site and the glory of winning are oh-so-real.

I’ll be back manana, hope to see you here.

Hello raindancettasanders. Happy Friday! Happy Monsoon Season here in New Mexico. Yay! We made it this far!

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

As my regular readers know, our beloved Experts are on a much deserved hiatus for the month of July. So let’s admire their adorableness:

And move on to some puzzler action:

???Real or Fake???

Nothing but the best graphics for this site! Riiiight.

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

Let’s see how you answered:

Steph from Indianapolis wrote, “How cute. Real.”

Ivynettle from Letters and Leaves wrote, “Real – and looking pretty!”

Alissa wrote, “real.”

That’s three votes real, zero votes fake.

What’s the correct answer? Let’s take a closer look and see if that helps:

Real! We spotted these cuties at the A store in Nob Hill a few weeks ago, an appropriate fit as everything in that store looks nice. I love it when people use real plants to decorate. They can charm up any joint.

Steph! You were first with the correct answer! The first answerer is the best answerer, so you have won the title of Leadingest Sweeping Theatrically Bestest Grand Championette of the Houseplant Blog Universe and your whole neighborhood. Congratulations! You may multiply all of today’s prizes by one cheese platter.

Everyone’s a winner today, good job! For playing this week, I’d like each of you to enjoy the following prizes: A crested goldfish, five gold-plated shoulders, a monsoon of good deeds, fried okra, 14 extra credity points, a coupon good for a July evening, two imaginary diminutive ponies, and one helpful u-turn. Congrats, and thanks for playing!

Up next is the new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Is this plant real or fake?

Your hint: This plant has something I’ve never seen before, and am not sure how to process.

Think you know the answer, smartyplants? Leave your best guess in the comments section. You have until midnight next Thursday, July 12th, MST (that’s 2a.m. EST) to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) next Friday. Remember, the prizes may be imaginary but the link to your site and the glory of winning are oh-so-real.

I’ll be back manana, hope to see you here.

Hello poofpufferies, and happy Friday!

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

Friday is the day I gather my plantabulous panel of Experts and lob questions at them. Except this Friday is a little different because the Experts will be going on hiatus after today, so it’s a bittersweet Friday. They have certainly earned a good long break, they’ll have the whole month of July off from these posts.

I’ll be here on Fridays throughout July with new plant puzzlers and imaginary prizes for you. So all is not lost!

Let’s say hi to our superstars, shall we? Hi Experts!

“Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiii Liza!”

Too cute! From left to right, that’s Tina, Thack, EZ, Dottie and Lewis. If you’d like to know more about them, please click here.

Due to the impending hiatus, I asked the Experts this question:

Q. Since you have a break coming up in July, is there anything you’d like to say before you go?

Expert Tina Quintana, you’re up first as usual, doll: 

A. Glad to get a break. Alot going on this summer. I hope you all can also get some R&R time and enjoy the summer! Enjoy. See you all back in August! Thanks for logging on!

Well thank you for being here! That’s good that you’re busy – it’s turning out to be a nice summer for being busy.

We appreciate you being here, Tina, so of course I’m going to call that a correct answer. Ding, ding, ding, ding! I’ll have some pretend prizes for you after the panel.

Expert Tim Thackaberry, here’s the question to you:

Q. Is there anything you’d like to say before you go on break?

A. First of all, I want to thank Liza for giving me a forum in which I can spew gibberish on a regular basis. The therapeutic value of this cannot be understated, as I live a pretty buttoned-up life. The outlet is great.

Lastly, in the immortal words of Phineas & Ferb: summer belongs to you! Make every day count! Pretty soon it’ll be cold again, and it will suck, so enjoy the heat & sunshine while you can!

Have a great July, everyone!

I’m quite fond of your spewed gibberish, Thack. You have a flair for making people laugh. (You make me laugh on a regular basis, and since I’m the moderator, my opinion is the most important one, haha.)

That’s for sure a correct answer again this week for you. Congratulations! We look forward to your return in August.

Up next, Expert EZ Ed Johnson. EZ, what say you, fine sir?

Q. Is there anything you’d like to say before you go on break?

A. Soak up the sun, embrace the warmth. Winter will return soon enough.

To be fair, it’s awfully tough to imagine January when it’s 100+ degrees in Albuquerque. But you’re absolutely right, winter will be here before we know it.

An EZ win for EZ this week. Well played!

We’ll move on to Expert Dottie Correll. Dottie, here’s your question, sweet lady:

Q. Is there anything you’d like to say before you go on break?

A.

Oh yes – there is a lot I would like to say — never at a loss for words.  While the world is going to “pot”, our Blog remains ever fast, fluent, slightly flighty, informative (sometimes) and most importantly, Funny.  We are like a cast of clowns who are ever ready, for our Friday performance!  What you see and get depends on what mood we find ourselves in!   We are a grand group of diverse, wily and witty individuals.  I am humbled by the ability of the others of the group that I am surrounded by.   You never know what dynamic thoughts may be proffered, what angle of knowledge they may see or a twist or turn they may take.  I am grateful to be a part of this Friday foray.  It may be the last vestige, where free thought is not only encouraged but also accepted.  For that I thank our esteemed prophet and mentor, Liza Wheeler; private business entrepreneur, volunteer to all humanitarian causes, literary Author, jokester and known Fondly, as “Liza the plant lady”                                            

So dear readers, Enjoy the month of July doing outrageous and daring dos.  I expect most of us shall .    The “good Lord willing “and the “creek don’t rise”, we will be back with you in August.    Slainte!

*Blushes.* Aw, thanks, Dottie. I hope you know how happy I am to have all of you here, too. It’s super fun to hear what you guys have to say on a weekly basis. You’re all so charming and talented, each in your own way.

Enough gushing, what I really want to talk about is what kind of “outrageous and daring dos” are you going to do this summer? Can you keep some sort of journal, maybe take lots of photos for us? I’m sure you’ll be a terror on that new scooter of yours – watch out, citizens of Arizona, Dottie’s on the loose and has time on her hands to stir up trouble! Hahaha, good times!

That would make a good first question for you guys in August – what’s the most “outrageous and daring do” you did this summer.

That’s another W for your Win column, Dottie. I’m looking forward to hearing your adventurous tales upon your return! Thanks so much for being here.

Expert Lewis Casey, esteemed citizen and father, here’s the question to you:

Q. Is there anything you’d like to say before you go on break?

A. My fig trees are starting to bear fruit and soon I will have a nice little bunch of figs to munch. The trees are only about 6 foot tall because they were frozen all the way to ground level last year.  So I am happy to have any  great figs at all. Several year ago I had a great crop of figs so I gathered a basket and went to visit a friend’s mother. Sadly my friend had died in the past, but I keep in touch with her mother a sweet and dear lady. Like always there were grandkids and sisters and love abound in this house as I was welcomed at the door. After hugs and greetings were exchanged I gave Mary Jane my basket of figs. Admirations and polite smiles overflowed as the basket was taken and placed on a shelf out of reach of little hands. Inquiries and pleasantries filled the room, “How are you Lewisss” Mary Jane would say in her sing song native Isleta voice. “I am fine, we all are doing well” I would answer in my slow mundane tone. On an on an on we chatted, after a while with a sweet smile the basket was fetched back to our seat and with an inquisitiveness in her voice Mary Jane asked me as she slowly examined one fig. “What kind of beautiful fruit is this, Lewisss, I have never seen them beffore.  I was much surprised and I said,  “Diane (our beloved Diane) told me that you loved figs.” To which Mary Jane laughingly replied, “Yes I do, I love Fig Newton’s.

I set a fig aside for you Diane and will  take your Mother a treat.

What a sweet story, Lewis! Funny, too. Diane’s family sounds great. It’s so kind of you to check on her Mom, I love that.

That’s the correct way to live life, so I’m definitely calling that a win in this panel. Huge shock that you would win again, Lewis, as you continue your winning streak of delightful and engaging stories. It’s awesome to have you here, thank you!

Everyone’s a winner this week, that does it for our panel of Experts. Thanks to all my Experts for volunteering their time to be here.

For playing this week, I’d like to award each of you the following prizes: An exotic stairwell, two primary accounts, a pretend green chile chicken salad sandwich, a domesticated sloth in a basket, four miniature silver moons, a high five and refreshing water. Congratulations!

In honor of your hiatus, I’d also like each of you to use the following epithet during the month of July: I May Be on Hiatus, but My Level of Expertise Reigns Supreme Because I’m So Awesome. So for example, Thack, if you’re at a BBQ and you meet someone new, you should introduce yourself as Tim Thackaberry I May Be on Hiatus, but My Level of Expertise Reigns Supreme Because I’m So Awesome. I’m sure you’ll make fast friends because of it!

Thanks again to all of you. See you in August!

Let’s move on to last week’s plant puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

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

Let’s see how you answered:

Janell from Indianapolis wrote, “I’m going to say real! Could be wrong but that looks like new growth in the picture…. I guess it could be a bare stem too.”

vastpalette wrote, “real!”

mr_subjunctive from Plants Are the Strangest People wrote, “Totally real.”

Terrence from Dynamic Gardening wrote, “This plant is naturally real with the incredible leaf patterns.”

Steph from Indianapolis wrote, “beautifully real”

Martha from Plowing Through Life wrote, “Absolutely real! And beautiful.”

Ginny Burton, Optician to the Stars, wrote, “Real, I think. And so pretty!

BTW, your post about crotons was timely. I was hacking some back at a rental property we just bought. So I gathered up the pieces and am planning to root them for lots more plants. Thanks for the tip!”

Ivynettle from Letters and Leaves wrote, “I’ll say real as well.

If I get my camera back tomorrow (I lost my bag today – it was found, but I don’t know if everything’s there), I might have a puzzler picture for you.”

Tom from Theatrum Botanicum wrote, “I’ll go with real!”

Carol wrote, “Yes it is real, I can see the little brown tip on there, and fake plants usually don’t have any brown on them.”

Wow, you’re all a bunch of smartyplants, aren’t you? That’s 10 votes real, zero votes fake.

So did you nail it or what? Let’s take a wider view:

Real! And you guys are right – pretty plants! Far too intricate and colorful to be fake, because people who make fake plants are no match for the real deal.

Good job, everyone! You did all nail it. Congratulations!

Janell, you were first with the correct answer, so you’re the best winner. I believe that’s your first, so wooho! Your first place finish earns you the title of Foremost, Greatmost, Topdoggetter, Ultimate Winning Machine of the Houseplant Blog Universe and Then Some. You may multiply all the prizes by four pink seahorses. Nicely played!

For playing this week, I’d like each of you to enjoy the following prizes: a celebratory Fourth of July holiday, bacon, a coupon good for an I.O.U, 16 extra bonusy points, an all-access pass to summer, a tray of petite earlobes, one bespectacled puppy, and three hearty hurrahs. Congratulations!

Ivy, if you or anyone else would like to submit puzzler photos, that would be great. Just shoot me an email with them attached. You can also submit questions for our Experts for their return, if there’s anything you’d like the panel to muse about.

Thanks again to all of you for being here.

Up next, the new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Are these plants real or fake?

Think you know the answer, plantyovores? Leave your best guess in the comments section. You have until midnight next Thursday, July 5th, MST (that’s 2a.m. EST) to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) next Friday. Remember, the prizes may be imaginary but the link to your site and the glory of winning are oh-so-real.

I’ll be back manana, hope to see you here.

Hello soulebrities, and happy Friday!

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

Yesterday I promised that I’d be back with an all-new Ask the Experts panel today. But due to what I’m gonna call a technical glitch, the Experts are unavailable afterall. Sorry! Please don’t cry! They’ll be back next Friday.

Let’s admire their adorableness:

And move on to the puzzlers.

???Real or Fake???

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

Let’s see how you answered:

Alissa wrote, “I’m going to go with fake, those flowers are so dull. If they’re real they sure aren’t radiating happy to me.”

Steph from Indianapolis wrote, “Were these in one of the fires? Fake.”

mr_subjunctive from Plants Are the Strangest People wrote, “Yes, fake.”

Terrence from Dynamic Gardening wrote, “There’s no sign of life or once life, I’ll say fake.”

That’s four votes fake, zero votes real.

So what’s the correct answer? Maybe a closer look will help:

My eyes! My eyes! They’re burning!

Fake plants sting, I tell ya! Gross, ugly, fake spray-painted mess of a bucket. It’s supposed to help lure people into the hair salon, but it made me want to run the other direction. After I snapped some photos, of course. They would be better off with attention-getting balloons.

Why do we hate fake plants? Because they’re ugly and expensive, and don’t make the world a better place like real plants do.

So everyone’s a winner this week, congratulations! Alissa, look at you! You’re first with the correct answer for the second week in a row! Because the first answerer is the best answerer, you’ve earned the title of Premier Princessory Leadering Rockabyebaby Sweeping Winningest Winner of the Houseplant Blog Universe and the Galaxy Beyond. You rock! You may multiply all the prizes by three hamburgettes. Congrats! Thanks for playing!

Thanks to all of you who played. For being here, I’d like each of you to have the following prizes: A whisper on a prayer, two shapely elbows, a crockpot of beerghetti, 16 extra credit points, one summer day, four polka-dotted gerbils, an A+, three pretend plush stickers, a jumpshot, and a platter of sausages.

Congratulations, and thanks again for playing!

Up next, the new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Is this plant real or fake:

Think you know the answer, smartyplants? Leave your best guess in the comments section. You have until midnight next Thursday, June 28th, MST (that’s 2a.m. EST) to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) after next week’s panel of Experts. Remember, the prizes may be imaginary but the link to your site and the glory of winning are oh-so-real.

I’ll be back manana, hope to see you here.

Hello monkeemoos, and happy Friday!

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

It’s Friday, and we’re happy about that because that means it’s time for another edition of Ask the Experts.  We love our Experts around here because they’re charming, and funny, and Experts in life.

Plus, they look so cute with their sunflower heads. Look:

“Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiii Liza!”

See? Adorable! From left to right, that’s Tina, Thack, EZ, Dottie and Lewis. If you’d like to know more about them, please click here.

So today’s question is about Father’s Day, which is this Sunday, June 17th.

Q. What’s a good gift for Dads of the land?

Expert Tina Quintana, you’re up first as usual:

A.

Dads of the land….huh never heard that before. TOOLS TOOLS AND MORE TOOLS!!!!!!!

I guess I should’ve asked what’s a good gift for Dads – it doesn’t have to be just American Dads. Tools seem like a good universal gift.

I’m gonna call that a correct answer, Tina, good job again this week! I’ll have imaginary prizes for you at the end of the panel.

Expert Tim Thackaberry, here’s the question to you, sir:

Q. What’s a good gift for Dads of the land?

A.

Speaking as one of the Dads of the land, anything my daughter gets me is awesome. She’s gotten me everything from hand-made cards to neckties to books, and I have loved them all.

The greatest gift of all, though, is a day of peace & quiet. That’s priceless!

Oh yeah, peace and quiet is a highly sought commodity when there are kids around. Fatherhood is not quiet.

That’ll be another W for your Win column, Thack. Well played again this week!

Up next, the question goes to Expert EZ Ed Johnson:

Q. What’s a good gift for Dads of the land?

Whaddaya say, EZ?

A. Peace and quiet.

Boom! That’s two in a row! You know what they say about great minds thinking alike!

That’s obviously a correct answer, so good job! Thanks for being here.

Up next, the lovely and talented Expert Dottie Correll. Dottie, here’s the question to you, sweet lady:

Q. What’s a good gift for Dads of the land?

A. By now, you know I am a researcher at heart!  I am always curious about why and how?  The campaign to celebrate the nation’s fathers did not meet with enthusiasm- as one florist explained: “fathers haven’t the same sentimental appeal as mothers”.  However, on July 5, 1908 a West Va. Church sponsored the nation’s first event explicitly in honor of fathers, a Sunday sermon in memory of the 362 men who died in the previous December’s explosions at the Fairmont Coal Company mines.  The next year, a Spokane,Wa. woman, raised by a widower, was successful in establishing the first statewide father’s day on July 19, 1910.  Slowly the holiday spread.  In 1916 President Wilson honored the day by using telegraph signals to unfurl a flag in Spokane when he pressed a button in Washington, D.C. in 1924.  When World War II began, advertisers began to argue that celebrating Father’s Day was a way to honor American troops and support the war effort.  By the end of the war, Father’s Day may not have been a federal holiday, but it was a national institution.
In 1972,Richard Nixon signed a proclamation making Father’s Day a federal holiday, AT LAST!

DAD, TODAY YOU CAN DO NO WRONG. YOUR ONE CHANCE TO SHINE AND LIVE IT UP!!
“EVERYBODY LOVES SOMEBODY, SOMETIME”

Cute! I love your research Dottie – so informative, so interesting. Thank you! I’m sure researching is time-consuming, so that makes me appreciate it all the more.

Of course I’m calling that a win again this week. You are a shining star of a person, and we’re grateful you’re here.

Expert Lewis Casey, fine sir, here’s the question to you:

Q. What’s a good gift for Dads of the land?

A.

Just a couple of photos from the southern fires.

Give Dad’s some common sense to be safe with fire and a good garden
hose. Not to put out any roaring hell storms but to water the garden he
should be growing for his loving family.

Those poor families! These fires are heartbreaking. 230 homes burned in Ruidoso, New Mexico. So many displaced familes. The Rio Grande chapter of the American Red Cross sent Lewis and others down to help the residents. Lewis is a volunteer Disaster Action Team Captain, which is great because he’s just the type of guy you want with you during a disaster – calm, safety-minded, intelligent, amicable, grounded. You rock, Lewis, thanks for all you do.

That’s an easy win again this week. Congrats!

That brings us to the end of the panel. Good one this week, don’t you think? I hope all the Fathers out there have a great weekend.

Experts, for playing this week, I’d like each of you to have the following prizes: a “world’s greatest Dad” coffee cup, three red onions, an elevator pitch, 18 bonus points, two imaginary tigers on skis, a peaceful moment, and a coupon good for one Father. Congratulations, and thanks to each of you for being here!

Up next, the answer to last week’s puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

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

Let’s see how you answered:

vastpalette wrote, “Real! I want one of those so bad!”

Martha from Plowing Through Life wrote, “Ha ha…loved the jokes! And the plant looks very real to me.”

Ginny Burton, Optician to the Stars, wrote, “I think I see a couple of brown spots on the leaves — real!”

Ivynettle from Letters and Leaves wrote, “Real! Such a pretty plant, but so hard to keep happy… *sigh*

Liza, thanks for playing on my guessing game! If anyone else wants to play, you have about …uh… 28 hours left.”

Ivy, I cannot believe you have 75 different species of plants on your balcony! That’s an insane amount of plants!

Just a handful of guesses this week, and you all said real. Let’s take another look at the plant to see if you’re correct:

Real! I took this photo at Osuna Nursery here in Albuquerque. Ferns are pretty plants but come with many demands. I’m surprised they’re even sold in the desert.

You were all correct, so you are all winners! Alissa, you were first with the correct answer, so that makes you the best winner! You’ve earned the title of Firstest, Pioneeress, Leading, Most Agreeable Grand Overall Champion of the Houseplant Blog Universe and Beyond. You may multiply all the prizes by one hairy woodpecker. Congrats, and thanks for playing!

For playing this week, I’d like each of you to have the following prizes: A fakeout, 14 bragging rights, one cameo, goat cheese, two left turns, a pretend pineapple downside up cake, four baby owls, a side with that, three cheers, and an even exchange.

I’d also like to award each of you the following epithet to use for the weekend: The Plantastic Bestest and a True Ray of Light. So for example, Ginny, if you go to a optician’s convention this weekend, you should introduce yourself as Ginny Burton the Plantastic Bestest and a True Ray of Light. I’m sure the other doctors won’t find that awkward at all.

Thanks again to all of you for playing!

Up next, the new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Is this plant real or fake?

Think you know the answer, smartyplants? Leave your best guess in the comments section or on my facebook wall. You have until midnight next Thursday, June 21, MST (that’s 2a.m. EST) to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) after next week’s panel of Experts. Remember, the prizes may be imaginary but the link to your site and the glory of winning are oh-so-real.

I’ll be back manana with a Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day post, hope to see you here.

Hello jalapenanas, and happy Friday!

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

It’s Friday, and that’s awesome. I’ve gathered my panel of Experts and they are here to brighten your day. They are Experts in life, and Experts in houseplant blog panels of Experts.

Let’s say hello to them, shall we? Hello Experts!

“Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiii Liza!”

You guys are adorable! From left to right, that’s Tina, Thack, EZ, Dottie and Lewis. If you’d like to know more about them, please click here.

This week, we’ve got a bit of a diversion from houseplants. A fun sidetrack. I can’t believe I’ve never asked my Experts this before. Panel, here’s this week’s question:

Q. Heard any good jokes lately?

It’s been a long time coming.

Expert Tina Quintana, you’re up first as usual.

A. I have not! So sorry to say I really don’t have anything off the top of my head. so let me google it….  according to Reader’s Digest:

Smart Ass Answer #5:

A flight attendant was stationed at the departure gate to check tickets. As a man approached, she extended her hand for the ticket and he opened his trench coat and flashed her. Without missing a beat she said, “Sir, I need to see your ticket not your stub.”

Oh burn! Southwest Airlines, right? Those flight attendants are heeee-larious.

A google win is still a win, so that’s another for you this week, Tina. Congrats, and thanks for being here. I’ll have some imaginary prizes for you at the end of the panel.

Expert Tim Thackaberry, here’s the question to you:

Q. Heard any good jokes lately?

A. This isn’t exactly a new one, but it makes me laugh!

 
What’s the difference between an optimist and a pessimist?

Pessimist: “Things suck, they can’t get any worse!”
Optimist: “Oh yes they can!”
 

A timeless classic…

Indeed it is. An oldie but a goodie!

I’m sure that made everyone laugh, so I’m gonna call it a win. Well played again this week, Thack.

Expert EZ Ed Johnson, the question comes to you next:

Q. Heard any good jokes lately?

A. One neighbor says to another: “Your husband tells me he has had a spiritual experience.”
“Really?” the woman wondered.
“He says when he goes to the bathroom God turns on a light for him and turns it off when he is done.”
“Oh, no,” the woman said. “He’s been peeing in the refrigerator again.”

Haha, that’s funny, EZ. Peeing in the fridge – who thinks up these jokes?

That’s for sure a win for ya this week, EZ. Nicely played! Thanks for being here!

The lovely and charming Expert Dottie Correll is up next. Here’s the question to you, sweet lady:

Q. Heard any good jokes lately?

A. The only joke that comes quickly to mind is a real “groaner” and  of course an Irish joke.  Now mind, you have to read it with a true Irish accent to get it! 

One Irish cook said to the other, “Now mind, you don’t put more than 239 beans in that soup”.   Aye, that’s peculiar and why must I be countin’ the beans, Riley, my boy?”  Ah you be knowin as well as I do, that one more bean would be “Two-forty”.

(I told you it was a “Groaner”- Erin Go Brah)

Ohhhhhh, Dottie! You’re hilarious. That was a real groaner but I’ll bet you brought a smile to everyone’s face.

We appreciate you playing, so that’s definitely another win for you, Dottie. Thanks so much for being here!

Expert Lewis Casey, here’s the question to you, fine sir:

Q. Heard any good jokes lately?

A. There was a terrible crash, it was a real shame. A bus full of lawyers, a bus full of politicians, a bus full of used car salesmen,  a bus full of insurance salesmen, a bus full of (insert choice)  went off a cliff and there were two empty seats.

Ohhhhh, another groaner! Bam! Pow! You sure knocked it to ’em with that one, Lewis.

Coming off a disappointing loss last week, that’s a nice rebound, Lewis. Another W for your win column. Congratulations, and thanks for playing!

You’re all quite the jokesters, and you’re all winners. You rock!

For playing this week, I’d like to award each of you the following prizes: A chuckle, three giggles, an even playing field, a trained penguin, a bowl of celery, 14 bragging rights, six blessings, one riddle, and half a cup of sugar. You earned them! Congrats!

That does it for our panel of Experts. Thanks to each of you for being here. The Experts will return in exactly one week.

Up next, the answer to last week’s puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

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

Let’s see how you answered:

Lauren from The Beauty Is in the Dirt wrote, “Something that lovely in the light has to be real.”

Martha from Plowing Through Life wrote, “It looks so beautiful and so full of life that I have to guess real!”

Terrence from Dynamic Gardening wrote, “That looks in fact really real, might be a chlorophytum maybe.”

vastpalette wrote, “I’m gonna go with real”

That’s four votes real, zero votes fake. Let’s see how the facebookers answered:

SierraRose Carp guessed, “real”

Sheila Adams Sweet guessed, ” where did you get it? I am sooo into roses will be real nice to time for umm a day or 2 🙂 I should not push it but his family is Irish obviosly from my babies hair 😉 But I would like to have a vintage rose shippeed from ireland :)))))”

Michael Plunkett guessed, “real”

Frank Marshalek guessed, “real”

Sam Johnson guessed, “real”

That’s four more votes for real and one vote that was too hard for me to decipher.

So what’s the correct answer? Maybe a wider view will help:

It is a very real plant – a collection of Ponytail Palms basking in the late afternoon sun. Real plants are just prettier than the fake ones.

I should’ve known you guys would guess correctly! You’re so smart!

Lauren, you were first with a correct answer so that means you’ve earned the title of Overarching, Plantabulous, Premierette, Firstdamental, Winningest Champion of the Houseplant Blog Galaxy. Congrats! You may multiply all the prizes by three slices of ice cream.

Everyone’s a winner this week – great job to all of you! I appreciate you playing, so for being here, I’d like each of you to have the following prizes: Two sophomoric jokes, a guiding light, one left eyebrow, a milk sandwich, 16 extra credit points, three fourths, lore, an act of daylight and a pretend miniature Elvis.

Congratulations to everyone who played, and hearty thanks!

Up next, the new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Is this plant real or fake?

Think you know the answer, smartyplants? Leave your best guess in the comments section. You have until midnight next Thursday, June 14th, MST (that’s 2a.m. EST) to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) after next week’s panel of Experts. Remember, the prizes may be imaginary but the link to your site and the glory of winning are oh-so-real.

I’ll be back manana, hope to see you here.

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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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