Gardener's Psychiatric Hotline


Guest Blog
The Gardener’s Psychiatric Hotline has been a perennial favorite for garden humor, which those of us in the Northeast could use a little of right now. Thanks to Ron Vanderhoff of Roger’s Gardens for his version:

“Many who read this column will soon retreat to their gardens for long periods of time. Once there, may will find peace, harmony, and beauty. But a few, some of whom I’ve met, will discover other, darker, qualities of the season.


At this season, I worry about many of my dear gardening friends. When talking to them, I see some of the early signs; the soft mumblings, the subtle mood swings, the small nervous tics. I suspect some of these garden comrades are only a dandelion or two away from serious floral psychosis. The annual anticipation of spring, mingled and juxtaposed with delirious expectations of plant perfection and the uncertainties of nature, drive some of my fragile friends to the brink.

These people need skilled help, carefully administered by trained professionals. Perhaps you know one of these people. Worse perhaps you are one of these people. Maybe you yourself are showing some early symptoms and haven’t noticed them yet. Self-diagnosis is difficult. Yet, these people hold pruning shears, shovels, and hedge clippers in their gloved hands. It is a dangerous time. But there is help.

Ring, ring...Hello! and welcome to the Gardener's Psychiatric Hotline.

If you are buying plants, yet have no space or time to plant them, you are obsessive-compulsive.  Please press 1 repeatedly.

If you want someone else to do the digging, you are co-dependent.  Please ask someone to press 2.

If you will plant anything and everything, you have multiple personalities. Please press 3, 4, and 5.

If you are sure the sun, rain, bugs, and plant diseases are out to get you, you are paranoid delusional.  We know who you are and what you want….just stay on the line so we can trace the call.

If you are sure the flowers are talking to you, listen carefully and a little voice will tell you which button to press.

If you can't throw away a plant, even if it is dying, you are manic-depressive and it doesn't matter which button you press.

If you think your garden is being attacked by evil spirits, press 6-6-6.

If you continue to plant only flowers with fragrance, you are nasally fixated. Please press the scratch-and-sniff button.

If you occasionally hallucinate and know that this year your garden is going to  look as good or better than Martha Stewart's please be aware that the thing you are now holding to the side of your head is alive and is about  to bite your ear.

If you refuse to believe the plant you are growing is a weed, you are in denial. Thanks for pressing the right button already!

If you are a senile gardener, after listening to all of the selections, continue to stare blankly at the phone for the next ten minutes while trying to remember why you called in the first place.”

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