Friday Favorites: Compost, Maverick Gardeners, C. Tangana

All right, confession time: Few things fill me with more joy than  rich, dark compost does. If this makes me sound like a gardening nerd, then so be it. And when the compost is free, well, even better. For home gardeners, our town’s transfer station offers compost for the taking.

Behold a mountain of black gold,

where Clif digs with his trusty spade.

Voila! Compost at home waiting to be spread. Be still my trembling heart.


Now,  you might be asking yourself, “What can compete with compost?” How about a book about wildly creative, eccentric gardeners? Yes, please! Enter Felder Rushing’s Maverick Gardeners: Dr. Dirt and Other Determined Independent Gardeners, introduced to me by my blogging friend Susan Rushton.

I cannot overstate how much I am enjoying this book about folks who, as Rushing describes it, color outside the lines when it comes to gardening. From photos and descriptions, I gather that Rushing is this kind of gardener, someone who tosses out the notions of perfect plantings and tasteful groupings and instead goes for wild creativity. It seems that I am that kind of gardener too, with an inordinate fondness for folderol and ornaments tucked among the plants. Then there is my obsession with moss. How I love moss, which grows on my front lawn, on my driveway, and even on the roofs (or rooves, as we say in Maine) of our house and shed.

Reading Maverick Gardeners feels like discovering a community of kindred spirits, exactly what I need right now in this time of the pandemic, which can throw even the most buoyant spirit into a funk.


For music, once more to NPR’s Tiny Desk Home Concerts. One of the things I especially love about Tiny Desk is how it introduces me to music and musicians I never would have heard of otherwise. So it is with C. Tangana, a Spanish rapper who got together with his extended family to make this extraordinary video that features musicians and singers of all ages. Note how in the back right corner, his mom and aunt are really into this concert. Finally, you don’t have to understand a word of Spanish to be moved by the music.


Favorites and small pleasures from blogging friends:

From Thistles and Kiwi, food, glorious food, and an equally glorious blue sky.

Alys, from Gardening Nirvana, has put together a lovely collage of what’s blooming in her garden right now. There might be a sweet kitty in the mix, too.

Ju-Lyn, of Touring My Backyard, extols the loveliness of rain, especially when she is watching from her balcony.

If you would like to have a post featured on my weekly Friday Favorites, let me know, and I will include it.


78 thoughts on “Friday Favorites: Compost, Maverick Gardeners, C. Tangana”

  1. Your post is so cheering, Laurie! First of all, I haven’t heard the word ‘folderol’ used for ever so long except for reading ‘The Three Billy Goats Gruff’ to my grandchildren: “I’m a troll folderol, I’m a troll ..’ Next I love the description of colouring “outside the lines when it comes to gardening” and gardening with “wild creativity” – that’s me to a T. I leave plants where they have seeded themselves and put anything together that will grow. Thank you for lifting my spirits this evening 🙂

    1. That is a lot of mulch. Should have made it clearer, perhaps. That mountain of mulch is at the transfer station, not in our backyard. The picture with the small containers shows how much we brought home. 😉

  2. That was certainly a fun session outdoors. I think it was lovely of your town to offer fresh compost. It is great that you got as much as you needed. And I do wish you all the best with your gardening.

  3. You are so funny, Laurie!
    I am not a gardener nor do I have any semblance of green fingers, but I can understand the thrill & joy of abundance of things needed!

    I did drive by a huge mound of steaming compost (or manure – I’m not quite sure) the other day on Older Daughter’s campus. I think the gardeners were preparing to tend to their plants.

  4. We compost our fruit and veggie scraps and coffee grounds, but we aren’t good about turning the pile. So far, it’s mostly small animals that benefit.

  5. Oh you are SO lucky to get free compost…. it is one of our most importance buys for the garden every year….. Have fun planting!

  6. Thank you for the shoutout, Laurie. You made me smile.

    I can completely relate to your love of compost. How lucky to be table to take some self-serve. Thank you for the book recommendation. It looks like a great read and right up my alley.

  7. Nothing like free compost! We have to make our own or buy it here.

    I enjoyed the TDC video, as well as your episode 7 of Tales from the Green Door, Laurie!

  8. Lucky you getting compost for free! And I like the idea of maverick gardeners – I think I would feel at home with them so I will try to find the book.

  9. I have compost envy. A mountain of compost gold is a gift from God. I like the idea of wild creativity in the garden. Some of my plants are most definitely on board with that idea, and ref

  10. The book sounds wonderful, Laurie. Even your description of it is enticing (and we do have a lot of moss out here! Enjoy your compost. I’m a big fan of of that rich earth too. Happy Gardening. 🙂

  11. Laurie what a fun post! I too asked my husband what folderol meant…….I thought it was some kind of oil! ha ha! I am very interested in that book too! I love it, that the the woman painted her favorite Nascar drivers’ numbers on her elephant ears! That shows spunk! Since I live in Nascar Country, this does not surprise me at all! I’ll have to tell JR! Cady
    PS can we contribute to this challenge on any day?

    1. Thanks! Friday is my day for posting links to blogs that feature small pleasures and favorites. But they can come from a piece posted any day of the week. Just let me know which one of your posts you would like me to feature.

      1. Very good! Tried to sign up to follow your blog, but there was some kind of disturbance in cyberspace, and I wasn’t allowed to sign up. Will try again later.

  12. What a wonderful way to compost Laurie, so lovely that it’s free! 💚

  13. Mercy, that’s a LOT of compost!! I’m eager to see what you do with it, what you grow and all. Veggies? Fruits? Flowers? Ooh, so many possibilities!

    1. Should have made it clearer that this huge pile is at the transfer station. What we brought home is in the photo that shows the compost in the small containers. 😉

  14. LOVE the community compost idea! Maine seems full of good things. I am always sharing your accounts with others. i compost myself. The book sounds like I want-I am certainly a maverick gardener

    1. Just finished listening to C. Tangana. Love it! The book is so good. A celebration of people who garden outside the lines. Sometimes literally.

  15. I felt a bit worried when I saw that massive pile of compost (before reading the comments) simultaneously thinking you’d had it delivered and ‘What has Felder unleashed in her?’ 🙂 I’m giggling about that as I write. Thank you so much for your kind words about his book.

    1. Tee-hee! I should have made it clearer that the pile was at the transfer station, and the compost in the containers was what we came home with. 😉 But…Felder has indeed unleashed the maverick gardener in me that was lurking all along. Loved that book. Did so much to perk me up when I was having the pandemic blahs.

  16. thank you for your kind words about my book on gardeners who i describe as “keepers of the flame”… susan rushton (my partner of 12 years) and i have enjoyed fun-loving gardeners all over the world… if you get a chance visit my own blog ( and learn about glass bottle trees – what i call “redneck chilhuly”…
    and by the way, my brand of garden journalism has been called FELDEROL…

    1. My great pleasure! Your book came exactly when I needed it—during a pandemic funk when nothing was pleasing me. Life did not seem as blah to me after I read “Maverick Gardeners.” Also made me realize I belong to the tribe of Maverick Gardeners. So many thanks to you. I have signed up to follow your blog. Looking forward to reading about your gardening adventures. Garden on!

  17. If you can find the out of print book called Gardening from the Heart: Why Gardeners Garden, I think you’d love it. It’s a favorite of mine. Also the new book Fearless Gardening by Loree Bohl and Shocking Beauty by Thomas Hobbs!

    I absolutely love photos of good compost!

  18. I’m still trying to catch-up with my reading and have still *so* far to go but… I just had to comment here, Laurie. Free compost!! How lucky you are! We make our own but never have enough and have to buy loads more. The music is wonderful! So uplifting! Thank you so much for sharing this musical family’s session xoxo

    1. We are indeed lucky to get free compost. Saves us quite a lot of money, and I can really pile it on my beds. As for catching up…on my blog, anyway, no worries. Life is busy. And stressful during this pandemic. Hugs from Maine!

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