The Grumpy Gardener

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Pruning ‘Knock Out’ Rose — When, Why, and How

Faithful reader Mandi Villa writes, “I love my ‘Knock Out’ rose, but it’s getting too big. Can I prune it without killing it?”

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Where Have All The Dogwoods Gone?

If you live in the Southeast, you probably remember all the “dogwood trails” that people followed when our native flowering dogwoods bloomed each spring. Thirty years ago, dogwood was the #1 flowering tree. Sadly, no longer. The trails have steadily eroded until now we see only remnants. Where have all the dogwoods gone?

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Crepe Murder Or Death Wish? It’s Stupid Either Way

OK, I promised you the most idiotic example of crepe murder I’ve ever seen and here it is. This guy is standing high in the air atop the stumps of a crepe myrtle he’s already cut and finishing off the rest. With a chain saw!

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Crepe Murder 2015 — Don’t Let ‘Em Grow Up to Be Trees, Boys

Some years ago, a woman approached my wife, Judy, in our front yard and asked when we were going to prune our crepe myrtles. When Judy replied, “We’re not,” the woman gaped in astonishment. “You’re not going to cut them?” she asked. “You’re going to just let them grow wild?”

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Open Season on Crepe Myrtles

Have you ever heard someone say that a plant has to “earn” its way in the garden? Well, here’s one tree that has definitely taken that notion to heart — with the aid of a manic store owner in Wilmington, North Carolina armed with a pair of loppers. Really, what better use can there be for a crepe myrtle than […]

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Crepe Murder Winners #6 & #7 — Shooting You The Bird

Sometimes when you witness a horrific example of crepe murder, you have a hard time deciding what the perp was thinking. That certainly isn’t the case here. Grumpy knows exactly what statement he was making, only propriety prevents me from spelling it out. Let’s just say it’s nothing like, “Have a nice day.”

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Crepe Murder Winner #5 — The Circles of Death

Most neighborhoods ban front yard cemeteries, but not this one in Summerville, South Carolina! In fact, Summervillians can lay to rest loved ones right by the street for all to remember and mourn. How many more deaths will it take till they know that too many crepe myrtles have died? The answer, says Bob Dylan, is blowing in the wind. […]

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Crepe Murder Winners #3 & #4 — Funeral For A Friend

Friends, please observe a moment of silence with me as we remember six beloved friends who recently fell at the hands of a madman. We may never know what motivated this tortured individual to lash out so violently and ignorantly. We only know these poor crepe myrtles were mutilated and we mourn them.

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Crepe Murder Winner #2 — Would You Pay A Dollar For This Tree?

Oooh, the irony of our latest example of crepe murder is just too good. Here we have a most sadly abused plant growing right in front of a Dollar Tree — a store that sells everything for a buck. So the question you must ask yourself now is, “Would I pay a dollar for this tree?”

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Crepe Murder Winner #1 — Confess Your Sin & Repent!

Friends, Grumpy believes the Big Guy loves us all and is willing to extend mercy to anyone who confesses to crepe murder and promises never to do something so horrible again. Even if the guilty party is a church.

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