We are probably never driven to learn in the way people were
when what they grew meant their survival.
One of our mentors, Curt Pickens, told us:
We grew tomatoes on the farm where I grew up. Those were hard
times in what was hard scrabble country, no money for extras. We
kids carried water by bucket, and dipped it out to the plants. I
hated to carry the bucket of manure tea, to fertilize them. I would
strip down first or it would slop on my jeans and we couldn't wash
clothes that often!
So, I wonder about people and spraying for things like
hornworms. There are never that many, they're big so you can just
pick them off soon as you see them. And if you don't the birds do.
The birds love 'em.
We were reminded of this the other day: It's good to
occasionally step out of your own shoes and take a look at your
gardening. At the pet store that day we realized what's pest to us
is sustenance to some, and a cash crop to others.
What we saw was a jar of caterpillars. We recognized hornworms
and thought, 'Who'd want to raise those? They're impressive moths
but you'd have to keep the moth indoors over winter and who wants
to go to such trouble to hatch tomato pests?' Then the attendant
propped up the sign that had fallen. It read:
Hornworms, great for reptiles, hi-protein, hi-calcium, low-fat,
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