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  1. Karen B.
    June 13, 2012 @ 7:19 pm

    Oh Victoria! LOL! Even my husband will get a kick out of this post. During our brief residence in Texas I was determined to grow a Victory Garden. I had the hat and the overalls in bright orange (I looked more like an escaped prisoner than a gardener). Anyway, after fighting with bugs which grew to be the size of a Volkswagon beetle (I had always wondered if there was more to the name then the shape of the car) Hubby kindly asked that we please, please buy our produce at the organic food stand a very short distance away. You go girl…keep fighting and you’ll at least have the satisfaction of knowing there isn’t any insecticide on your bug eaten cabbage. 🙂 When I see the incredible gardens that they have attached to manor houses I have to wonder how many hours it takes the staff of 20 to keep things pristine.


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      June 14, 2012 @ 8:11 am

      Why do I fight the bugs? They always win, I should just accept it! Not to mention the year we had a groundhog family make its home under our neighbor’s shed. We do have a fence, but it didn’t deter them at all. It literally made me crazy… To the point where I was reading about how to electrify your fence, and ranting to my husband about voltage and wattage and showing him diagrams… while he looked at me like I’d just escaped the asylum.

      Sometimes people will say to me—wow, you must really love gardening. And the answer is no. No I do not. I DO like eating the stuff, but I do not like growing it.
      p.s.- I think you need to post a photo of yourself in your Gardening Convict costume!!


  2. Dana
    June 15, 2012 @ 12:30 am

    You are a serious gardener. You make my attempts seem like nothing. Wow, and good for you!


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      June 16, 2012 @ 7:13 am

      I am serious about some things, but end up overwhelmed by the ongoing, never-ending tasks! A better gardener would have had those mustard greens out long ago and replaced with something else… whereas I look at them everyday with exhaustion and say—tomorrow. I’m like the Scarlett O’Hara of gardening.


  3. mary
    May 7, 2013 @ 11:46 pm

    I am reading your entire blog in a day. I had anticipated commenting at the end, but I so thoroughly love this post that I can’t wait.
    That photo above: of a leg and arm (presumably yours?) encroaching on the neighbors bagged leaves?
    Good Lord, that is perfect.


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      May 8, 2013 @ 6:01 pm

      Your comment made my day. Truly.

      Yes… that’s my leg, getting ready to steal some leaves. This fall I’m planning to make an anonymous flyer to leave at people’s houses who bag their leaves in plastic.

      It will be educational. AND shame them into not doing it anymore.


  4. Sarah
    April 3, 2014 @ 11:09 pm

    Every post on your blog makes me like you more and more! I am constantly outraged at the act of people putting leaves in plastic bags! My boyfriend and I have argued about this a few times, too. Why would you put an organic material into a package that wont allow it to break down!? Sometimes, when I walk the dogs, I have the urge to free the leaves…


  5. Andrea
    November 19, 2014 @ 12:21 pm

    Yes, yes, and more yes! I thought I was the only one who stole their neighbours yard waste. I sneak down my street at night with a wheeled dolly and then skitter through the shadows, hoping nobody is watching. Our city no longer collects leaves in plastic bags and yet, there they are, rows upon rows of them lining people’s driveways, waiting for a pickup that will never come. I have a “no leaf left behind” policy but my yard is so tiny I run out of places to put them. I pour them in my compost bin and then stomp around on them like I’m making leaf wine, hoping to fit in just one more bag. I hoard loads of them behind my garage. I build new garden beds just so I can fill them with leaves. I am a leaf monster. My neighbours will be coming after me with torches and pitchforks soon…


  6. Ralna
    May 4, 2015 @ 3:21 pm

    hahahaha. Lemme tell you of the secret weapon of organic gardening: backyard chickens. You can use the leaves in the coop (they love it). Also you pen them over the winter in the garden plot where they busily dig and dig and dig and dig and poop and poop till your once massive pile of compost is reduced to nothing and all spread out, thanks very much. They find the cutworms and grubs and larvae that eliminate a lot of insects for the next season. They provide endless entertainment, lovely eggs with orange yolks full of A, D, E and K2 (brain food). They even chase and eat mice. Love my ladies! I have one that pecks my pants till I pick her up and hold her then she sticks her head under my arm like I’m the mama hen. Best book I have seen about raising chickens humanely as garden partners is Harvey Ussery’s The Small Scale Poultry Flock or his website at Free the leaves!


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