the gestalt gardener

I’m a sucker for great public radio programming, and Mississippi Public Broadcasting does not disappoint. My favorite show, if I had to pick one, is The Gestalt Gardener–a 60-minute call-in show about plants, flowers, trees, landscaping, you name it–with Felder Rushing.

Each week, Felder fields questions from all over the state, with a few inquiries from neighboring states mixed in for good measure. And he always offers incisive, thoughtful feedback. I’ve learned oodles as a listener and newbie gardener. To listen to archives of this show, hop on over here. You and your garden can thank me later.

lost and found: the unbelievable journey of vickburg’s guy brown

Mississippi Public Broadcasting is a treasure trove of interesting radio programming. There’s the stuff you expect as a public radio listener anywhere in the U.S.: NPR’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered, for example. And then there’s stuff that’s unique to Mississippi–the hourly call-in gardening show to Felder Rushing (it’s such a great show).

Occassionally MPB will offer a program called Conversations. The host, Marshall Ramsey, is a celebrated Mississippian. He’s an author, a guest speaker, and cartoonist for our state’s newspaper, The Clarion Ledger. Sometime back in November I was puttering around in my car, as I am wont to do, and Marshall had the most interesting interview. It was with John Mosely, I believe. John was explaining the most incredible tale of a World War II pilot from #Vicksburg. His name was Guy Brown.

Guy Brown

John bought a TBM Avenger, an old U.S. Navy bomber, with the hopes of restoring it to its former glory. And in the process of restoring this plane, John found Guy. John did more than find Guy. He found that Guy’s mom kept a diary of his military service on a wall in the basement of Guy’s childhood home, which is located on Drummond Street in Vickburg. This wall captures Guy’s last tour–the day he died–July 28, 1945.

Guy Brown wall

You have to watch this video to appreciate this exceptional history.

fixin to

Most Jacksonians I know take landscaping, lawn care, and gardening pretty seriously. And for good reason, the climate and soil (at least in Hinds County) are ideal for trees, plants, flowers, flowering bushes, you name it.

I was puttering around in my car. (I am an expert putterer.) It was a Saturday morning, and I was listening to Mississippi Public Broadcasting. They have a hour-long call-in show devoted to gardening. What a trip, I remember thinking. The host Felder Rushing fields questions from Mississippians from across the state.

A lady called in and said she was fixin to do something, a task I can’t recall. Felder excitedly interrupted her, “Wait! I can tell you’re from the South b/c you’re FIXIN TO.” My attention was heightened, and I became utterly hooked on learning what I like to call the discourse of y’all.

The expressions and sayings here are colorfully wondrous. I could listen to Mississippians talk all day long, if my schedule permitted. I quickly created a list of things Jacksonians say and the Chicago equivalent. Enjoy.