Ole W21

Those of you who are serious gardeners will understand.

The temperature this past Saturday reached 64. My crocus were opened for the first time announcing spring. Some of the daffodils look like they will be blooming by next weekend.  It was an overcast day, a great day for gardening. I got the John Deere out, loaded my shovel and bags of composted manure in the scoop and headed out to dig up Elizabeth Salter, Meadow Morn and Spanish Sketch Daylilies out of my Deshler High School area and relocate to another spot in the garden.  After dividing and replanting near a white Beautyberry, I noticed a saw briar and a couple of hackberry trees coming up under the bush and grabbed the shovel and pushed it in the ground.  The blade folded. I thought it had bounced off of the tree root and plunged the blade in the ground again with the same results.

My favorite good ole model W21 (ole yeller) made in the USA which I’ve had for at least 20-25 years blade was broken.  The first shovel I can remember wearing out before breaking a handle. I’m not sure what brand it was as that information was long gone, but I think it may have been an Ames made in the USA which is hard to find these days.  I had purchased it when shovels with fiberglass handles first came out. It was on the pricey side, but it was lightweight with a bright yellow handle that could be seen if left in the yard. Light weight was something I needed after back surgery. I had purchased several other shovels of different types and lengths over the years but after using them once of twice went back to ole yeller which no longer had a point on the blade.  Last summer I had accidentally ran over the handle with my tractor and it came through without a scratch.

After visiting with a good friend from high school whom I hadn’t seen in 30 years, I reached for a fiberglass shovel with foot pads on top of the blade I purchased when I had plantar fasciitis in both feet a couple of years ago. With the painful condition, I thought it would be easier on my feet.  It is heavier than my shovel with wooden handles and has a dull blade so I’ve only used it a couple of times. The plastic coating over the fiberglass handle is cracking like it was the one run over by a John Deere instead of ole yeller. It still has the labels on it with the 800 number and is guaranteed 25 years but I bet China won’t replace it.

I finished digging up the saw briar and weed trees around the beautyberry and also dug up a purple beautyberry growing too close for relocation along the west property line.   I had moved the underground fence back about ten feet, now the hooligans are able to chase a pesky squirrel that has been playing chicken with them up the wild cherry tree now and have broken off part of a native azalea called ‘Arneson Flame’.  I went to the garden for a hooligan cage to put around it.  I hope I can free up some of the cages for my tomatoes come summer.

Sunday, the temperature was up in the seventies and I washed the salt from the several snows we’ve had in the last month off of my Dodge truck.  While washing it I realized why I was asked what brand of truck it was just after I bought it.  Dodge must be changing the name to RAM as Dodge is in small letters on the tailgate medallion and RAM is in larger letters on the sides.Blackie had to help out and looked like a drowned rat by the time I got finished.

I found a new Ames fiberglass shovel assembled in the USA of US & foreign parts with a grass green fiberglass handle.  It’s a little lighter than ole yeller but I worry about mowing over it if I loose it in the yard with the colorization.  I tried it out planting some Ranunculus and it seems to work ok.

Monday I’m taking ole yeller to the Rebel Welding Shop to see if Leon can make it dig another day just in case I loose “Mr. Green Jeans” in the tall grass.

Addendum — Leon says I worn ‘ole yeller’ too thin, so there’s no fixing it.   She’ll go out in the garden along with my broken fork.

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2 replies to “Ole W21

  1. I saw my first buttercup…or narcissus…or jonquil…or som’thin’ yella yesterday morning. Now if someone will just tell Dan that no more snow is needed…

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