Steve Bender
Steve Bender grew up in Lutherville, MD and was exiled to Alabama in 1983 for reasons that remain secret to this day. He loves fried okra and often selects dinner wine based on whether it goes well with fried okra. His mission is to make gardening uplifting, accessible, and inspirational to all. He will no doubt succeed. Follow him on Twitter: @grumpy-gardener. Also on Facebook: facebook.com/SLGrumpyGardener.

Recent Posts By Steve Bender

My Beauty Gets Her Beautyberry

Judy and I have an agreement. She’s the Queen of the House. Whatever she says about the inside goes. I’m King of the Garden. I enjoy supremacy there. But very occasionally she requests a special plant be added and the King cannot deny her. So it was this week with a shrub she liked called beautyberry.

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Why Grumpy Hates Fall Color

Why do we have amazing fall foliage one year and barfy fall color the next? Heck if I know.

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Calling All Hummingbirds! Pineapple Sage

Hummingbirds birds are on the move, either fleeing a volcanic eruption in Iceland or just heading down south for the winter. In either case, they’re looking for nectar-laden flowers to fuel their journey and keep them from dropping from the skies like little winged crullers. And here’s one plant they love — pineapple sage.

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The Rose of Fall

On a walk through the neighborhood yesterday, I came upon a glorious shrub with white, pink, and red blooms. It’s the rose of fall that’s not a rose at all.

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No Acorns Means No Squirrels — I’m Good With That

I have this big chestnut oak in my back yard that drops about a ton of big, meaty acorns in fall that squirrels relish. However, a brief examination of the tree yesterday revealed very few acorns this year. Without this vital food source, those fluffy-tailed rats might starve. Aw, nuts.

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Real Men Eat Salads

Many of you probably think Grumpy hunts and devours live animals. Well, he used to, until his wife convinced him to eat a more healthy diet. So here is Grumpy’s new freshly planted salad garden. Not only will its leaves supply lots of Vitamins, minerals, and fiber, but unlike animals they will not struggle while being harvested.

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Don’t Let These Marijuana Lookalikes Send You To Jail!

Did you see the video of the guy in Georgia who said police raided his home after they mistook the okra he was growing for marijuana? Okra doesn’t look like pot to me, but maybe it does to a cop hovering 60 feet above in a helicopter. Watch and enjoy!

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Spider Lily — The Overnight Sensation

Look what popped up in my garden last night after it rained! A red spider lily (Lycoris radiata), one of my favorite fall flowers. If you don’t have any, you really ought to plant some. No bulb is easier and it will probably outlive you.

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What To Do About Weedy Neighbors?

See what happens when you don’t mow your lawn and let weeds grow up all over the place? The city places an embarrassing sign in front of your house. This is Grumpy’s neighbor and Grumpy would like to know how you feel about it.

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The Worst Plant in the World

This plant sure looks pretty, doesn’t it? Kinda like English ivy with kaleidoscopic leaves of red, pink, yellow, and green. It sports pretty white flowers too. DO NOT PLANT IT! If you do, you will be sorrier than Angelina Jolie after she married Billy Bob Thornton.

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