Paeonia Tenuifolia - Intense Crimson Fernleaf Peony

Sunday, April 14, 2019 0
Paeonia Tenuifolia - Intense Crimson Fernleaf Peony
Paeonia tenuifolia is a perennial flower that is better known as the fern leaf peony. This variety of peony has a crimson color to it that is similar to what you'd see with heirloom red roses. It is a plant that will typically be one to two feet tall early in the growing season. Paeonia tenuifolia blooms earlier than other varieties of peonies and can flower all summer, into autumn, but will sometimes go dormant in mid-summer.

Paeonia tenuifolia can be grown in zones 4 through 7 and will begin blooming in June.

Paeonia tenuifolia prg1
Flower Paeonia tenuifolia in Prague botanic garden, Czech Republic - Karelj [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Paeonia tenuifolia is the perfect ornamental flower

Paeonia tenuifolia has a few flowers that are excellent for growing as a companion. These flowers include similarly intense colored rose varieties and colors (per your choice), Jackman's Clematis, Carnations, and Chrysanthemums. Even other Paeonia tenuifolia, such as the pink shades of Rosea and Rosea Plena, are good too The choice is up to you though. Many perennials that enjoy full sun to partial shade, like the fern leaf peony does, make for a great companion flower.

Paeonia tenuifolia care

In early spring you should start watering the flowers if there isn't enough rainfall to do the watering for you. In late spring it's best to remove flower heads that are dead or look like they are dying. You should also remove fallen petals and flower heads from around the flowering plant. In the summer, it is also best to keep the flowers watered if need be.

When the flower has died back in the fall it is best to cut back the foliage of the plant and remove from the flower bed. This is to prevent pests from surviving over the winter. It may sound extreme but you should cut them back to ground level.

Very useful, detailed pages about Paeonia tenuifolia can be found at http://www.peonies.org/P_tenuifolia.html and https://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/62914/

Other varieties of peonies can be seen at these pages:

Activated Bamboo Charcoal - Natural Air Freshener For Odors

Sunday, March 24, 2019 0
Activated Bamboo Charcoal - Natural Air Freshener For Odors
Activated bamboo charcoal has been around for a long time but natural air fresheners made from the charcoal have been rising in use in recent times. The activated bamboo charcoal deodorizers outlined here have 200 grams of activated bamboo charcoal per bag. There are 5 bags per order available at a very affordable price when each bag can last up to two years when following the instructions. Each bag has a durable metal grommet in the corner. So you'll be able to place them on a hook or hang them the deodorizing bag anywhere you need it.

The charcoal is useful for absorbing odors, including smoke, from enclosed places. Which includes cars, closets, pantries, bathrooms, laundry rooms, even your refrigerator. They're good for anywhere that builds up moisture and odors. The activated bamboo charcoal could also prevent the growth of mold by preventing an abundance of moisture. They can also help in lowering or even wiping out allergens within your home.

activated bamboo charcoal
Activated bamboo charcoal
The best thing about activated bamboo charcoal, compared to chemical air fresheners, is that it is non-toxic. Also, chemical air fresheners are horrible for the environment and for you and your pets' respiratory systems over the long term. Chemical air fresheners also contain toxic ingredients and most people don't even recycle the containers. Which means that the containers end up at landfills, harming the environment. These activated bamboo charcoal bags are environmentally-friendly and non-toxic.

With bamboo charcoal, you can be sure that there won't be any toxic ingredients in them. They're even safe to use in contact with clothes or near your pets. They can be used near or in laundry hampers. They can be used in luggage, gym bags, book bags, reusable grocery bags, near litter boxes, and elsewhere.

To keep your activated bamboo charcoal working at its best, and allowing it to keep absorbing odors and moisture, you'll have 'revitalize' them in sunlight for two hours every month. This is so that any small amount of moisture that may be in the bag is dried out by the sun. Doing this will give you the maximum time of use of the freshener bags, for up two years.

When the activated bamboo charcoal is no longer viable, you can cut open the bags and use the charcoal in your garden. The charcoal will help improve soil health and plant growth in your garden.

Want to learn more before purchasing?

Sequoyah Caverns - Valley Head, Alabama

Monday, March 18, 2019 0
Sequoyah Caverns - Valley Head, Alabama
Sequoyah Caverns and Ellis Homestead, closed since 2013, was a popular destination in DeKalb County, Alabama. The cave was named for Sequoyah in 1963. There is no evidence that he visited the caves but they were home to some of the Creek and Cherokee since archaeological evidence was found in the caves beginning in the 1840s. Some of these artifacts were on display in the main building.

They held seasonal events such as Nativity performances called Winter of Glory from December 21st-24th. Other events they held included Fall into the Past, a Civil War re-enactment that took place in November, a Spring Festival, and Summer Blast on the 4th of July, with fireworks and bluegrass music.

Better descriptions of the events that they held:

Fall into the Past
Relive history at our spectacular Civil War
re-enactments that take place for several days every November.

Winter of Glory
Join us for our live nativity scene event December 21st through the 24th every year.

Spring Festival
Come witness the powerful world of tractors, engines & machinery every Spring. Also, enjoy great music & crafts.

Summer Blast 
Let the excitement of fireworks & bluegrass music warm your soul every 4th of July.

History of the Sequoyah Caverns and the Ellis Homestead

James Ellis moved his family to Valley Head, Alabama from Tennessee back in 1841. He and his family built a log cabin and later a frame house where the campground is today. The cabin was 
later moved and used for another home 
on the farm.

In these pioneer days, the Ellis Family had to be tough and worked hard to cut farmland out of a wilderness. This hard work allowed the family to accumulate hundreds of acres of land, including what is today Sequoyah Caverns.

During The War Between the States, the Ellis family was divided, just like the nation itself.  James, a 2nd Lt. in the Union army, died from a camp disease in 1863. He is buried at the Chickamauga Battlefield. Four of his sons also served in the war. Three of his sons fought for the Union and one fought for the Confederacy. Only two of the sons survived the war. Mrs. Ellis had one son, Abner, who was too young to fight. 

Although times were hard after the war, the farm began to prosper again. By the turn of the century, the Ellis family was relatively well off. They were growing corn, cotton, wheat, and oats, making sorghum, and raising sheep and cattle.

Today, the direct descendants of James Ellis still live here welcoming visitors from all over the world who come to explore the Ellis Homestead and see Sequoyah Caverns.

Original Settler: James Ellis, 
Born 1806, moved here in 1841, died 1863

Son: Abner Jackson Ellis, 
Born here 1847-1900

Granddaughter: Harriet Saphronia Ellis, 
Lived here 1870-1935, married John Humble

Great Granddaughter: Abbie Jane Humble, 
Lived here 1904-1977, married Roy Lee Jones

G. Great Grandson: John David Jones, 
1933- Present, Owner of the farm, working with 
his son, Roy

G.G. Great Grandson: Roy Lee Jones II, 
1964- Present Running day-to-day operations

G.G.G. Great Granddaughter: Rebecca Jones, 
1989- Works today as a tour guide

G.G.G. Great Grandson: John Paul Jones, 
1991- Works today on the farm

Legacy of the Mound Builders - Short Documentary

Sunday, February 24, 2019 0
Legacy of the Mound Builders - Short Documentary
This 17-minute documentary was filmed in Ohio and covers the subject of the mounds located in the Ohio River Valley. Mounds which were built up by the Hopewell culture from around 200 BC until 500 AD. The Hopewell were preceded by the Adena culture. (Cultures that succeeded the Hopewell)

Thousands of mounds were built between these two cultures. Sadly, many of which have been damaged or destroyed due to carelessness while researching them, damaged for the use as materials for building foundations for homes, and in 2009, damaged to provide for fill for Sam's Club in Oxford, Alabama.

The last records of these mounds being built were in the 1600s.

Watch: The Legacy of the Mound Builders

Why and How did Native Americans Build Mounds

Social Relations In Our Southern States - Chapter VII: Poor White Trash

Monday, February 04, 2019 0
Social Relations In Our Southern States - Chapter VII: Poor White Trash
This post contains an excerpt from the 1860 book "Social Relations In Our Southern States" by
Daniel Robinson Hundley. The title of the chapter that this text is from is titled, "Poor White Trash."

The chapter tells of how the slave owners, and the Southern elite, viewed poor whites in the Confederate south. Including being the views of the author himself. These Southern elites, the slave owners, the plantation owners, had a view that 'poor white trash' were worthless. They were looked down upon for living in rural areas instead of near plantations. They, the "white trash", wanted to be left alone. On the other hand, Southern elites wanted everything to be their business and for the benefit of their "business". These specific poor whites wanted no part of participating in slave ownership either since most of them were against it. All in all, If the Southern elite could have gotten away with it, they would've also enslaved poor whites.

The views of the Southern elite were purposeful in dehumanizing the poor white trash. They held such views to try and justify their own wickedness. To justify, in their own minds, their gains made off of slavery. That and their gains made from all sorts of atrocities against poor whites and especially slaves. It was this truth that Nat Turner understood during his slave rebellion. He spared poor whites from their actions. Turner and his fellow men saved their actions for those families who owned slaves.

Social Relations In Our Southern States Daniel Robinson Hundley

Book Excerpt:

Every where they are just alike, possess pretty much the same characteristics, the same vernacular, the same boorishness, and the same habits; although in different localities, they are known by different names. Thus, in the extreme South and South-west, they are usually called Squatters; in the Carolinas and Georgia Crackers or Sandhillers; in the Old Dominion, Rag Tag and Bob-tail; in Tennessee and some other States, People in the Barrens--but every where, Poor White Trash, a name said to have originated with the slaves, who look upon themselves as much better off than all "po' white folks" whatever.

To form any proper conception of the condition of the Poor White Trash, one should see them as they are. We do not remember ever to have seen in the New-England States a similar class; though, if what a citizen of Maine has told us be true, in portions of that State the Poor Whites are to be found in large numbers. In the State of New-York, however, in the rural districts, we will venture to assert that more of this class of paupers are to be met with than you will find in any single Southern State. For in examining the statistics of pauperism, as prepared by the Secretary of State for New-York, we learn that the number of her public paupers, permanent and temporary, is set down as 468,302--to support whom requires an annual outlay of one million and a half of dollars, which has to be raised by tax for the purpose. They are also found in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, and all the States of the North-west, though in most of these last they came originally from the South.

But every where, North and South, in Maine or Texas, in Virginia or New-York, they are one and the same; and have undoubtedly had one and the same origin, namely, the poor-houses and prison-cells of Great Britain. Hence we again affirm, what we asserted only a moment ago, that there is a great deal more in blood than people in the United States are generally inclined to believe.

Now, the Poor White Trash are about the only paupers in our Southern States, and they are very rarely supported by either the State or parish in which they reside; nor have we ever known or heard of a single instance in the South, in which a pauper was farmed out by the year to the lowest or highest bidder, (whichever it be,) as is the custom in the enlightened States of New-England. Moreover, the Poor White Trash are wholly rural; hence, the South will ever remain secure against any species of agrarianism, since such mob violence always originates in towns and cities, wherein are herded together an unthinking rabble, whom Dryden fitly describes as,

                         "The scum
                         That rises up most, when the nation boils."

The Poor Whites of the South live altogether in the country, in hilly and mountainous regions generally, in communities by themselves, and far removed, from the wealthy and refined settlements. Why it is they always select the hilly, and consequently unproductive districts for their homes, we know not. It can not be, however, as urged by the abolitionists, because the slaveholders have seized on all the fertile lands; for it is well known, that some of the most inexhaustible soils in the South have never yet felt the touch of the ploughshare in their virgin bosoms, and are still to be had at government prices. Neither can it be pleaded in behalf of the Poor White Trash, that they object to labor by the side of slaves (see note 1); for, as we have already shown, the Southern Yeomanry, who, as a class, are poor, work habitually in company with negroes, and usually prefer to own a homestead in the neighborhood of wealthy planters. We apprehend, therefore, that it is a natural feeling with Messrs. Rag Tag and Bobtail--an idiosyncrasy for which they themselves can assign no good reason--why they delight to build their pine-pole cabins among the sterile sand hills, or in the very heart of the dismal solitude of the burr-oak or pine barrens. We remember to have heard an overseer who had spent some time among the Sandhillers, relate something like the following anecdote of a youthful Bobtail whom he persuaded to accompany him out of the hill-country into the nearest alluvial bottoms, where there was any number of extensive plantations in a high state of cultivation, which will aptly illustrate this peculiarity of the class. So soon as the juvenile Bobtail reached the open country, his eyes began to dilate, and his whole manner and expression indicated bewilderment and uneasiness. "Bedadseized!" exclaimed he at last, " ef this yere ked'ntry haint got nary sign ov er tree! How in thunder duz folks live down yere? By G-o-r-j! this beats all that Uncle Snipes tells about Carlina. Tell yer what, I'm goin' ter make tracks fur dad's--yer heer my horn toot!" And he did make tracks for dad's, sure enough.

And the biggest reason that the materialistic Southern elites despised the "poor white trash":

Panics, financial pressures, and the like, are unknown amongst them, and about the only crisis of which they know any thing, is when a poor fellow is called upon to "shuffle off this mortal coil." Money, in truth, is almost a perfectly unknown commodity in their midst, and nearly all of their trafficking is carried on by means of barter alone. In their currency a cow is considered worth so much, a horse so much, a dog so much, a fat buck so much, a wild-turkey so much, a coon-skin so much, et cetera, et cetera; and by these values almost every thing else is rated. Dollars and dimes, or pounds, shillings and pence, they never bother their brains any great deal about.

This chapter, as well as the book, was openly pro-slavery propaganda. See this paragraph on how the author describes educated poor whites:

But if, after he has gained the knowledge and social position to which he so ardently aspires, and has thereby become the pride of his doting old mother and the boast of his hard-working father; he still continues to harbor in his bosom resentment against those whom fortune favored more than himself in the outset of life, and secretly entertains proposals from the deadliest enemies of his native land merely because of such personal spite, to gratify which he also lends himself to aid the schemes of Northern abolitionists; where is there an honest man who would not utterly loathe and despise his meanness of soul? We know he may delude himself into the belief, that the social position of his father as well as that of his mother's family connection is due mainly to the institution of slavery; but is this an excuse for treason? Is it any excuse for his wishing to deprive other men of their property, or for his aiding to stir up a servile insurrection, hoping to see the roofs of his supposed enemies blazing at midnight and tumbling in upon the devoted inmates, while the emancipated blacks are dancing savagely around the ruins in the delirium of a brutal joy?

This chapter above, much like the book, is an attempt to justify slavery. Furthermore, it also outlines the view that the Southern elite, including the author, held the view that "poor white trash" should be afforded the same human rights. Practically saying that they weren't "white" (aka the idea of whiteness) as it were, other than the tone of their skin. All because the majority of poor whites were against slavery.

By their acts and their views, most poor whites were anti-slavery. The lies of the classist author falsely states that the majority, if not all, poor whites were pro-slavery. When, in reality, it was the southern yeomen who were pro-slavery. Especially since they profited off of living near slave owners and their plantations. On the other hand, the "poor white trash" purposefully lived far from the slave owners to not play a part in their actions. 

This book was part of attempts by Southern elites who tried to turn poor whites and slaves against each other. Nainly to create a buffer for themselves (the elites). It was a defense of their inhuman practice as pressure mounted against slavery. Which, as history tells, the buffer failed. Slave rebellion leaders like Nat Turner didn't fall for it. Neither did the unknown numbers of poor whites, out of the ~100,000 Union Army southern whites total, who fought on behalf of the Union Army during the Civil War. 

If you want to read the whole chapter or the whole book: 
Full digital book available for free on Internet Archive (archive.org)

Biography on Daniel Hundley and a shorter biography here which says that his father was a slaveowner.and names family members. Another biographical entry, from an ebay listing, saying that Hundley married his first cousin.

Note 1: This is not because they were racist. Far from it since they were, by and far, opponents of slavery and southern secession. It was because they knew the game of the yeomen go-alongs and especially the slave owners. The wealthy slave owners saw the "poor white trash" as potential sources of a re-imagined, re-invented, and reintroduced indentured servitude. Which the "poor white trash" was wise to from hearing the stories of the older generations of their families that were indentured servants. 

Delta Blues Documentary: Willie Foster - Greenville, Mississippi (1994)

Sunday, January 06, 2019 0
Delta Blues Documentary: Willie Foster - Greenville, Mississippi (1994)
Blues singer Willie Foster in Greenville, Mississippi, interview from 1994 (possibly mid-September), sharing his experiences involving the beginnings of his blues career and other experiences.

Excerpted from the documentary, Delta Blues.

From IMDB: "Delta Blues is a one hour music/video documentary tracing the living history of the blues through the rich brown dirt of the Mississippi Delta, and through the lives of these traditional bluesmen."

The full documentary is 60 minutes long. Unfortunately, at this moment, there are no physical copies of this documentary for sale, as of this writing, just a "Currently unavailable." entry on Amazon. So these youtube videos are the only source as of now.

More about Willie Foster

Watch more excerpts from the Delta Blues documentary and similar blues videos/interviews from the RawBluesTV youtube channel

Katelyn Nicole Davis ♥ Forever Missed