Garden Hats, here at the Hat Ranch, vary in style and fabric depending on the moment. Hot, cold, dry & wet ~ our gardening sojourns have swept us away in all kinds of weather. And, of course ~ not just any hat will do ~ you've got to be ready ~ what if someone drops in while you're picking cabbages?!
First off, I have to say that Carol & I are self-taught gardeners so if your looking for expert advice, you've come to the right place. We like to garden, talk about gardening, take pictures in the garden ~ you know ~ GARDEN! We welcome your stories and anticipate several contributors stepping forward to offer tales, & high-brow-serious philosophical stuff: You can reach me, Jim, by clicking on my name. The same goes for Carol. I will confess that Carol is better at answering emails than I am.
The Hat Ranch
I have received numerous snickers from people not prone to such displays, when I have refered to the home of our rambling vegetable garden as the "Hat Ranch". I have to admit it all started with Frank Zappa ~ his song extolling the joys of raising dental floss bushes in the proud State of Montana was playing on the stereo, when a thought arose in my otherwise placid mind. If Frank could live on a "Dental Floss Ranch", we could live on a "Hat Ranch". It was only a matter of time, once "Hat Ranch" came into common use, that folks began refering to the vegetable garden as the "Hat Garden" & it was downhill from there. That is not to say this whole brightly lit endeavor is only about raising veggies. I hope to jointly explore in both words & images: stewardship of the greater garden, raising and processing food, pruning, water issues, the blog scene, & more. But for now, I invite you into our virtual garden and hope you return from time to time to watch it grow.
Gardening has been a staple in our lives ~ along with Art, Hat People, & the Art Community ~ since we settled in the mountains above Talent, Oregon over 20 years ago. My personal gardening heroes are Masanobu Fukuoka and Ruth Stout. I will refer to their awesomeness from time to time during the tour. I would also like to recognize the ongoing support of Jacob & Roze*, Mary the Garden Guru, who joined us a few years ago with a degree in horticulture from the University of Illinois (yes!), followed by Andy (who likes tomatoes). Then there's our new neighbor Chris. He fenced & irrigated a quarter acre vegetable garden with such lightening speed you could hear the thunder roll. The sum of these parts adds up to the following: after years of gardening on our own, Carol & I are now enjoying a real Gardening Community!....to be continued>>>>
*pictured left to right: Carol in a Deep Cut Wool Newsboy, Mary in a Medium Cut Corduroy Newsboy, Andy in a Full Cut (he has dreadlocks), Jacob as Pan in a play he wrote & produced at Antioch College in Yellow Springs, Ohio (his website is RitualTheater.org), Roze in a Red Linen Deep Cut, & Jim in a Linen Sports Cap.