Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Lion Dung

You know when you get an email with the subject line of "lion dung" that is a must-open-immediately! I haven't blogged in a few days because since last Thursday I've attended two all-day conferences, gave a garden talk in Bowie, finalized the magazine layout proofs, been working on the details of our Philadelphia Flower Show trip, planning our Photo Contest art show reception, etc. I've had a few seconds each morning to scan through my email just to delete the spam and see if any fures need putting out, but pretty much no time to reply to actual notes.
This "lion dung" note from Jeff Nesmith was in response to the WAMU Metro Connection radio interview I did last week that aired on Friday and repeated on Saturday. The topic was our current magazine cover story of "Dealing with Deer." The transcript and audio file are available here.

Of course, during the deer talk I just had to mention the local person (name withheld) so desperate to get rid of deer they filled their car with fresh lion poo from the zoo. Smelly and ruined car, to say the least.

Jeff Nesmith wrote and said: >>In your future interviews, please try to be more emphatic in your warnings to people about the use of lion dung as a pest repellant. Many years ago, when I worked for the Atlanta Constitution and lived in the suburbs there, I went to a place called "Lion Country Safari," where they had an overabundance of rhinoceros manure, and got some, planning to make me a "powerful stuff" compost. While there, I picked up a bag of lion manure, because I was told it would keep rabbits out of my garden. It was a self-defeating strategy. As far as I know, the rabbits stayed out, but so did I. For about a week, until we had a good hard rain, going into my own garden was the second-most revolting experience I've ever had. Incidentally, I can't imagine how this will be of use to a garden enthusiast, but the MOST revolting experience I ever had happened when I was six years old and was vomited on by a female buzzard who happened upon me while I was playing with the chicks in her ground-level nest. Perhaps you can imagine, something lying out on the road or some field, dead, until it becomes putrid enough to attract a buzzard, who then converts THAT into vomit. . . . I recently retired, and I am going to subscribe to your magazine.<<

Jeff, I'm sharing your note here as it made my day and I know others will enjoy it as well.

BTW if you go to Google images and put in "lion dung," you get lots of links to this "Silent Roar" product pictured here. It is described as "non toxic pellets soaked in essence of lion dung, dried and then sterilised" and it will keep naughty neighborhood cats away from pooping in your flower beds. I'm not going to ask how this process occurs nor do I care if it is truly effective (all the neighborhood cats are welcome at my watering hole and none have done their business here), but I have to ask about the logic of this application. To prevent little cats from pooping in your beds, you spread a thin layer of big cat poo? How does that make sense? Won't you be living with kitty poop and smells either way? Why pay for and spread it yourself?


FirePhrase said...

I think I went to college with a guy who wore Silent Roar cologne. There was definitely an essence of lion dung about him.

Note to self: no matter how cute baby buzzards look, just WALK AWAY!


WashingtonGardener said...

That mommy buzzard was generously sharing her meal with her chicks and this young visitor. Talk about ungrateful! ;-)