Little Back Yard of Horrors
by Dave in Texas

I have to say it’s been a strange spring, weather-wise. 5 inches of snow on the Saturday night before Easter, evening temps in the low 50s. Weird. For central Texas anyway.

But this weekend was pretty normal by our standards… close to 80 yesterday, breezy and nice. It was a good day to get dirty.

I’ve been needing to replace a few plants in the back yard that were assaulted by a beagle. Little shit chewed up a banana tree and a Mexican fan palm. For those of you unfamiliar with the fan palm (Washingtonia robusta, no idea where that name came from), they are a tough palm with leaves that are connected along the vanes, and they spread up and out, shucking dead growth around the base of the trunk. They’re tough, can handle a freeze, and look great around a pool.

They’re also dangerous. Got serrated shark teeth edges, sharp as a razor, and black lifeless eyes. Like a doll's eyes. When he comes at ya, doesn't seem to be living... until he bites ya.

So anyhow it’s a nice day and I get in the truck and drive out to the Lonesome Pine Nursery, to find a couple of healthy specimens. They point me to the little, sick looking ones first. Bah. I already have my eye on the one. 15 gallon, I think, almost five feet high and about a four foot diameter. Perfect. Goofy dog won’t even be able to get his mouth around it.

The nice people load it into the pickup, all three of them, and I drive off thinking “gee, that must be heavy, taking three of them and all”.

I back into the driveway, get out, walk around to the bed, drop the tailgate.

And I look at this thing.

killer.jpgIt presents a bit of a logistical challenge, but I’m up to it, cause I have the Wheel(TM).

The location is an issue though, a raised bed, inside a 3 foot high retaining wall. This may require some lifting.

So I start digging this hole. A big, deep hole. Deep enough for one human body or two good sized beagles. A manly hole. A beeg, gaping wound in Gaia. And Gaia struck back. I grab the bottom of the palm, and pull it toward me, and a frond slices a 3 inch cut in my cheek. Just like that. Didn’t even see it coming.

And now it’s tasted blood. And it likes it.

I drag – pull – push – heave this thing into the back next to the retaining wall, and somehow manage to push it up on the edge of the rock wall. I have a plan. I will set it on its side, slice open the container, roll it out and into the hole where it will right itself and drop cleanly into place.

This is brilliant. Like judo, I will use my opponent’s weight and strength against him. I cut open the container, brace myself by placing my left foot against the inside of the hole. I grab the trunk of the palm and pull it toward myself. But I didn’t see the serrations on the trunk where I grabbed it and they cut into my palm. I let go and try to sit up, but the palm is having none of that, and keeps falling. Then I lose my balance, and I tip backward as the palm is now rolling toward me, gravity doing its job. I fall into the hole ass-first and the plant rolls in on top of me, and I don’t even notice where another edge cut my arm and it’s now bleeding faster than my hand.

Mission accomplished.

I think to myself, “Great. Now all I have to do is wait for someone to come put the dirt on top of me and I can die”. I’m sitting in a hole, with 80 pounds of fern and dirt parked on top of me, making mud out of dirt and blood.

Somehow I manage to get out from under this thing and get it planted where it belongs.

Next weekend’s project involved power tools.

For Dave, every day is a good day to get dirty. wink wink.



Well, you know what they say, every rose has it's thorn

you just need a little patience

and then you'll have a home, sweet home

/Three 80's hair band references!
//i am on fiirree!


Sounds like a heavy plant. Next time you pick one up, you shouldn't go again on your own.

Seems like the warm breeze we had this weekend was a wind of change for you.

That palm tree ain't talkin' 'bout love. Looks like you went round and round with it.

/four biatch


Aha. An impromptu contest.

Those are the best.

I guess you could say the palm was stuck on me.

Dave bleeds in vain, but some get a bullet in the head instead.

Once bitten, twice shy Dave


Funny stuff, Dave.

I was inspired to write a Haiku... or 3.

razor tipped fan palm
meets a Goober from Texas
who will win this match

waiting to flatten
stubborn Goober from Texas
the fan palm waits patiently

Lonesome Pine Nursery
sold a Goober from Texas
evil inplantate


Gee why didn't you wrap the pool ladder with frickin' barbed wire?

Thanks, Grandpa.


Rose goes in the front, big guy.

I know, makes no sense but still a very funny line.


I thought Mrs. Dave told you you're not allowed to do anything big in the yard unless you're on the Buddy System.

Remember what happened last time?

Have you considered getting OnStar installed in your shorts?


Hey, the dog was licking my face.

And I only have room for one star in my shorts!


You should sell tickets.


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