Truth Against the World

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

The Bamboo Monster


On August 30th,  just after arriving home from a 14 day long intensive Permaculture Design Course, I was informed that South Carolina Environmental Control had been too my residence.  They were looking for Cannabis.  Apparently residents of this county are growing it in their gardens to hide it.  I'm not.  I've got kids, and I'm not stupid enough to grow cannabis where it's illegal to do so.  Anyways, because bamboo is technically a grass, they have decided that I must keep it cut at 16 inches.  This is preposterous.  0.5 miles from my residence there is an established grove of Phyllostachys Spectabilis.  I have that same bamboo growing in my yard, along with others...all of which came from the ground in this county. 

Allow me to officially introduce myself. I, dear reader, am the Bamboo Monster. Now, before you get your panties in a wad and start calling me names, like my all time favorite Bamboo hater term, "Damnboo." Please realize that I'm a nice monster. However, according to the Department of Homeland Security, I'm in fact the opposite. Just listen to the words of an anonymous chicken shit from the USDA:

"The so-called gardeners who plant this vile stuff in their yards claim that it makes a great privacy screen, while in actuality its an invasive weed that spreads to adjacent properties and wreaks havoc on entire communities. This law was enacted to send a clear message: If you want privacy, build a fence like a normal person!"

"Wreaks havoc on entire communities," now that is just misguided at best. I mean I may have climbed up through your ventilation ducts in the middle of the night and chocked a bitch or two in my past, but I'm reformed. I promise. I've spent the last 40 years or so being damned by American anti-culture. Ever since the American government abandoned its intensive research of me in the late 60's. I was fit to revolutionize the Earth for humanity. Personally I think I got tossed to the curb by American culture for the same reason that hemp got tossed. I'm just too damn useful to humans. The rotten money changers at the top of the human socioeconomic scheme just can't figure out how to control me to monopolize on my usefulness. According to the above referenced article, I'm actually illegal to grow in the United States. However, you can buy six foot canes a half inch in diameter at lowes for 3 bucks a pop courtesy of China. Somehow that makes sense, but growing me in your yard for free doesn't. You might be interested to hear what the illustrious Michael Chertoff, head of the DHS, had to say on the matter of befriending me:

"Privacy in America is a quaint, outdated concept. That's why we support this legislation. The abolition of bamboo screening in the yards of America will make it much easier for people to see what their neighbors are up to. The passage of this law is one small victory in the larger war against terror."

Did you know that from 1898 to 1975 the US Department of Agriculture introduced hundreds of my varieties to the states. The plan was to plant me widely as a commercially viable plant. Around 1960, the New Crops Branch of the USDA studied Phyllostachys bambusoides and loblolly pine to compare yields for pulp production. Then on July 1, 1965 the Department of Agriculture just stopped researching me. I was very confused by that because I'm much more virile than pine. Latter I found out that the government turned their back on me because loblolly pine business interests wanted them to. The same thing happened to hemp.

Contrary to what idiots may think, I am native to North America. I'm not an invasive weed, or a pest. For some reason Americans seem to think that I can defy the laws of nature. They think I will "take over" if you plant me. Well, yeah, I will take over if you don't keep me in check. Let me tell you a little secret. I'll throw this little nugget out there as a peace offering; I have an Achilles Heel. If you want to control me, all you have to do is dig a trench around me and fill it with sand. Then, twice a year, you take a spade and plunge it into the sand. When you find one of my rhizomes you cut it. It's called root pruning (or rhizome pruning in my case), and it really is that easy. If you do that I won't escape containment. Well, I may still find my way out by plunging down beneath your trench, but eventually, if I do that, I'll send up a shoot and then you'll know where I escaped. Then you just eat the shoot, or don't, and pull the rhizome up and put me back into containment. 

My growth habits are not a state secret, and I'm easy to contain if you just understand how I grow. Sure, once I get established as a healthy grove I'm just about impossible to get rid of, but then what's wrong with being strong and powerful? I am stronger than steel and I'm capable of weathering hurricanes. Indigenous cultures know that when mother nature strikes via natural disasters I'm the safest place to seek refuge. I've been told that I have somewhere around 1400 uses for mankind. Why, kind reader, do Americans hate the most useful plant to them on the planet?!!!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Evidence of the Bamboo Monster?

Let me take you on a journey through a magical land inhabited by Pagans, Druids, Witches, and Bamboo Monsters.  It's located in the Upstate of SC and is home to the SUN FoundationAncient Earth Design also resides in this location, as does the Fox Den and the Gypsy House.  Tribanns are to be found, as are treasures, gourds, and bamboo bones (I think they are the phalanges of the Bamboo Monster himself).  Legend and myth is unfolding here, and if one looks closely enough fairies can be spotted racing from earth mound to earth mound.  It all amounts to hope in a hopeless time.  In other words, beyond monetary value, and beyond business as usual.  For there is very little BAU to be found here.  It's cordoned off and kept at bay by intentional magic.  As in the esoterically occult kind.  The kind that uses natural objects to weave meaning, purpose, and intentionality.  Join me on this journey.  Captured in one windy, unusually chilly, overcast and drizzily day after a storm had passed.  
There is a tribann composed of 6 Earth Mounds

A hidden mushroom



more gourds and a bamboo staff altered by sun, rain, and druid magic

reflection of phyllostachy spectabilis in a rain water filled swale

Wind blown spectabilis

A bee on a gourd blossom

gourds gourds and more gourds

Zen pointing out evidence of the Bamboo Monster.  He leaves behind bamboo bones as he passes through to check on the welfare of our chickens.  We're certain he lives here. 

Bamboo bones left by the Monster.  Zen says he was "keeping them safe from the ostrich."  Apparently "The Ostrich" likes to eat Bamboo Monster phalange's left behind by his passing.  Zen threw them all into the pond. 

a gourd and a booga

Blueberry being "gourdtacked" as Wendy likes to call the process of being overtaken by a gourd plant.  We've gotten 2 blueberries so far this year.  This is the second year of growth. 

One of many bamboo trellises held down by stone with a message to the future about what we do to televisions in this land

our fire pit

A fugi apple tree along with several different gourds, concord grapes, and Saint John's Wort.

One of the three black locust trees next to the main swale.  In five years it should be around 20 feet tall.

Zen's leg in the main swale

Aji Crystal with one of last year's gourds.  The same gourd that was broadcasted throughout the garden by me

Montmorecny Cherry Tree in the front attached to a staff with a Georgia Belle Peach tree behind surrounded by gourds and pepper plants

This maple tree grew from under our deck, went through the deck wood, and emerged in the corner of our deck.  It grew to about 10 feet high.  I had to remove because it was right next to the house.  I planted it here.  You can see the curved branch at the top of the maple, that was the main branch.  What I planted was actually what was beneath the deck.  This maple wants to grow. 

A maple tree cut down with the Sergent Major.  That's a size 13 chacco.  I'll be burying it in a Spiral Earth Mound this week. 

One of my two compost bins

Maygold Peach tree

Gourd central

Ripe Aji Crystal

Lavender, tomato, gourd, Saint John's Wort


Granny Smith guyed with bamboo


Saint John's Wort growing behind the lavender and beneath gourd leaves

Bamboo Island

Ghost pepper with Pseudosasa Japonica

The soon to be pond (it's not been lined yet)

The Fox Den

Phylostachy Aureus, aka fish pole or Golden bamboo


Aurea with the power line above

Rooster Spur pepper with Phyllostachy Negra or Black Bamboo.  There's are no canes yet.  What you see are just stems coming off of the rhizome

Pseudosasa Japonica, aka Arrow bamboo due to the Japanese using it for arrow shafts due to it's perfectly straight growth. 

Here you can see how straight it grows

Arrow Bamboo at the tip of the bamboo island

Phyllostachy Aurea Koi.  The rose color is south and the green is north. The canes change rose colored with sun. 

One Koi cane, and by this time next year there may well be 30 canes. 

Bamboo island

Phyllostachy Spectabilis

Here showing the idiosyncrasy of spectabilis.  Twisting out of the ground.  It also sometimes grows in a zig zag formation.  

Bo Peppa's (my late dog) memorial.  She's burried beneath those Fresno pepper plants and likely has spectabilis rhizome growing through here by this point.  Maybe it's morbid to point that out.  I think it's beautiful. 

my favorite wild edible, Sorrel.  I never knew it before my business partner showed it to me.  Since it's spread like wild fire through my yard.  It's everywhere!!!  It taste like lemon. 

Most of the chickens

"Little Chicky" with the broody hen.  He had a sister but she drown in the water bowl on day two.  He's a redstar rooster.  We didn't incubate his egg, the broody hen did. 

the new "eggmahal" located in the chicken shack.    I made it from mostly salvage and bamboo.  I designed it to be an egg laying chicken house capable of keeping dry on it's own, without the benefit of the old ass tarp that kind of keeps the chickens dry.