Friday, October 7, 2011

Sleep, Creep, Leaping Huskers

As fate would have it, when author Benjamin Vogt offered two free copies of his new book, Sleep, Creep, Leap through the GardenRant blogsite, I was one of the lucky winners.  Evidently, God doesn't deem me worthy of a big PowerBall Lottery pot, but He does follow my gardening interests and decided to help me out a little in that regard.  My providence perhaps wasn't as lucky for Dr. Vogt, since I have been aware of his marvelous blog  for some time and knew that publication was imminent, and so he lost at least one sure purchaser of  his book since I would have eventually purchased a copy on my own.  However it happened, I'm ecstatic to have received an autographed copy direct from the Benjamin.

Sleep, Creep, Leap, subtitled "The First Three Years of a Nebraska Garden," is an enchanting and very readable collection by Benjamin Vogt, who, as previously noted, also writes the blog "The Deep Middle", which includes his thoughts on gardening, poetry, and nonfiction.  Although Dr.Vogt (a PhD-type Dr.) appears to be a Cornhusker, living and working as he does in the enemy territory of Lincoln, Nebraska, and although my blog today is titled Sleep, Creep, Leaping Huskers, this is not intended to be a commentary on Nebraska jumping from the Big Twelve to the Big Ten, nor is it about past K-State vs. Nebraska rivalry.  The bonds between two gardening bloggers are far above such petty issues.

I finished Sleep, Creep, Leap, exactly 100 pages long, in a couple of nights.  Obviously, it was an engaging read and an enjoyable one from an experienced author, because my usual pattern of night-reading results in me falling asleep after approximately six pages on any given night.  The book is full of short essays and thoughts on different aspects of gardening in the Great Plains, and of course, I was interested in what he has to say because I garden with many of the similar plants and philosophies as Benjamin.  In that regard, it sure beats reading about somebody growing bananas and camellias in Florida.  But I particularly enjoyed his stories about exposing his new wife to the gardening world, and about his neighbor, Mr. Mows All The Time, and about transporting trees in his hatchback.

Some quotes from Sleep, Creep, Leap that tickled my fancy:

"For what seemed the first time, I was discovering what it meant to spend eight hours a day in a place without knowing I had."

"Sometimes, I come home feeling guilty.  I didn't really need to buy so many plants or even any plants at all.....And when I return home I hide them behind a shrub, and sometimes plant them when I know my wife's in the shower or away at work."

"I want to say, gee, Ryan, Jim, Steve, whatever your name is, all the synthetic fertilizer you spread four times each summer is a waste....You're just giving money to corporate drug dealers."

"The next day, after much deliberation, fighting my instincts and loathsome attitude tpward most annuals, I headed out with pot and spade and dug up the cosmo.  I put it in the back of the garage hoping it might survive winter, that we both might."

So to my readers I say, pick this one up on a coming cold Winter day when reading about a ruby-throated hummingbird or Helianthus 'Lemon Sky' will be the closest you're able to get to either one.  And to Benjamin, I say, Well Done, your wife was right about you scissoring grasshoppers, it is okay to be a plant snob, I sneak plants from my wife also, and, you really should make love in your garden (perhaps under cover of the roar from Mr. Mows All The Time).  It's obvious that you want to buddy. 

1 comment:

  1. Good one.This post is really very innovative article. This article gives very good advice about gardening.Thanks to the writer for such a wonderful information.


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