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

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.

Read More

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.

Read More

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!

Read More

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.

Read More

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.

Read More

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.

Read More

Fall Color to Die For — Literally

It’s the beginning of fall. You emerge one morning to find that your tree has suddenly turned color a good 4 to 6 weeks early. You find this delightful. You’re not so happy when your tree fails to leaf out next spring. What the heck happened? Is the Big Guy mad at you?

Read More

Eat Kale, Stay Out of Jail

I wrote the first story about growing kale that ever appeared in Southern Living and, as a result, was nearly hauled off to the pokey by an infuriated public. And all because I offered them insight and wisdom about this neglected, nutritious veggie.

Read More

Evergreens Turning Brown? Blame It On Bagworms

Last week, your evergreen tree looked lush and green. Now it’s been turning brown and decorating itself with little seed cones. What the heck is going on? As always, Grumpy has the answer.

Read More

Why Smart People Plant Chinese Pistache

Chinese pistache is a very good tree. Smart people plant them, which means so should you. Now is the time to do so.

Read More