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Garden Humor: Harvesting Rocks

Updated on January 14, 2019
Maren Morgan M-T profile image

Maren gardens in PA, specializing in earth-friendly, unconventional, creative, joyful artistry. She works for eco and climate health.

Free Hardscape Material

Rocks - a gift from Mother Nature.  Always available in a Pennsylvania yard.
Rocks - a gift from Mother Nature. Always available in a Pennsylvania yard. | Source

How To Get Fresh Air And Exercise, And Something Else

I love sunshine, fresh air and digging in the soil. That's a good thing because I live in Pennsylvania, a land of rocky glacial debris (the glaciers dumped their trash here before melting their way back to the pole.) If I want to harvest vegetables, fruit, or copious flowers lovingly nurtured by my own hand, weather and luck will weigh in on the probability of success. However, there is one harvest we Pennsylvanians can take to the bank: a harvest of rocks.

Rocks Are Part Of God's Plan

Personally, I have no problem with rocks. Since I expect them, I have the smug satisfaction of never being disappointed. They are part of "all things bright and beautiful" on this earth and I dig up a new collection of them every time I expand a garden plot.

See the picture? Some unfortunate gardeners actually PAY to bring them to their hardscape. Not I. I'll admit I do move them to new locations because I have bought into the theory that the tender roots of my plants and "The Rocks" have wicked wrestling matches below the surface. Ultimately, though, I count on finding rocks in my garden to become freebies for walls, borders, and paths.

Clay in the Keystone State

Our clay is orange.
Our clay is orange. | Source

Bonus Material: CLAY!

We also have clay in our mid-Atlantic soil. This is its color in eastern PA (see picture.) It is a lovely accent to the organic material that nurtures seedlings.

If we didn't have clay, how could the original Lenna Lenape people have made clay pots? Think about it.

I break it up. I mix it in with the brown stuff. Hey - I just like excuses to be goofing off outdoors. (Hmmm, this sounds like golfers.)

Grub Genocide

Mea culpa. Alright, I am not Albert Schweitzer. I do not revere ALL life. As I dig and stir and mix, often with bare hands, I am bound to encounter the white wormy-looking bug larvae which eat our grass from the roots up. The common name for these dudes is grubs.

A grub infestation makes the lawn look ugly, with patches of dried up blades of grass and even dusty soil where de-rooted grass blew away. Then, the neighborhood gang of skunks marauds the patches to dig for the grubs, making bigger dusty spots and pockmarks. Grubs are truffle to skunks. So, the skunks forage away, causing more lawn damage!

I will let you in on a secret: I murder them.

The grubs, not the skunks.

I do not have the lawn treated with any lawn service chemicals, so when I am digging and come across a grub, I murder it by squishing it. The fastest and most effective way is with my thumb and forefinger, gloved or naked.

If you would like to emulate my sophisticated technique, please hold the little bugger arms-length away from your face. It is very rare that their splattered inner guts will be a perfect match for your lipstick! Don't ask how I know this.

Occasional Bonus In The Garden

By now you probably have a picture of us Pennsylvania gardeners as outdoor Sweeney Todds who are still roaming freely about due to the strength of the ACLU and its protection of special individuals.

We do, however, accidentally produce some flowers, herbs, and vegetables. But our real goal is to ...

Harvest Rocks.

© 2011 Maren Elizabeth Morgan


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