The Day of the Emu

In CategoryAdventures of Greenhouse Mama

It was one of those rare sweet summer days in Windsor, Ontario where even though it was

extremely hot, the humidity was low. The display gardens at Grass Root Gardens were a buzz of

activity, July’s burst of flower colour nodded their approval delightfully at the beautiful

day. It was just one of those days where everything smiles. Garden Centres are naturally a

happy place, customers are excited to pick the perfect plant for that perfect garden spot

and I am just as eager to oblige. It was one of those days until I heard a pair of sun-

hatted women shout in unison, each oh raising an octave panic “Oh, oh, oh, your pet, your

pet!”  I don’t have a pet. The thought barely formed when two enormous

feathered emus came charging around the greenhouse towards me! Did I mention they were

enormous, and their gait though charging is not what you’d call normal.  Speedy for sure,

but in a bobbing, weaving way. Knees way up, head bobbing, running sideways, screaming emus

coming right at me and behind them two funny-hatted screaming women! Faster than Superman

those birds bobbed  and weaved their way north. Brushing off our astonishment and lifting

our jaws off the ground, we three women laughed and laughed. Emus are that funny!  Of

course we were concerned for the safety of our fair feathered visitors. Emus don’t live in

Windsor! Emus live in a zoo, or better yet their natural habitat Australia, not in a garden

centre in Canada! Our concerns were short lived. Two running men came to the rescue. Seems

their pet emus escaped. Pointing towards the bush I said, “they went that a way!” Its been

ten years since the day of the emu, I have no idea of their fate, hopefully they were

rescued and loved. One thing is absolute, I never forgot them.




Interesting Emu Facts

The Emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) is the largest bird native to Australia. It is also the

second-largest extant bird in the world by height, after its relative, the ostrich.


The soft-feathered, brown, flightless birds reach up to 2 metres (6.6 ft) in height. They

have long thin necks and legs. Emus can travel great distances at a fast, economical trot

and, if necessary, can sprint at 50 km/h (31 mph) for some distance at a time. Their long

legs allow them to take strides of up to 275 centimetres (9.02 ft).


Emus have a nail on their toes, akin to a knife, which is used in kicking away predators

and opponent Emus. Their legs are among the strongest of any animals, allowing them to rip

metal wire fences.


Male Emus do most of the incubating and nurturing of their offspring.


Emus are farmed for their meat, oil, and leather. (Say its not so)


Having researched the interesting facts about Emus on Wikipedia for my post, I am glad for my ignorance regarding their legs of steel. Ouch!

Planning a New Garden? Do it Without Digging-The Easy Way!

In CategoryGrass Root Gardens NEWS

Gardening is a joy but it is also hard physical labour. Lazy I am not but whenever the chance presents an easier way to do anything, I am there! Building a new garden plot requires little or no digging by following these easy instructions.   Give it a whirl, you will never fear the dreaded double-digging again!

Outline the shape of your new garden bed with your garden hose or something similar. If it is existing lawn cut the grass as short as possible. Once that is done get newspaper or cardboard and lay it on the shaped garden bed, overlapping the sheets like laying roof shingles. Lay newspaper using 4 sheets thickness, cover the whole area inside the shaped outline. Lay one thickness of cardboard if that is what you prefer. When finished, wet the newspaper/cardboard thoroughly. Now you are ready to lay the compost or organic soil on the area you have prepared. Lay the organic soil/compost at least 3ocm(12″) thick. Let sit for one week (the soil will settle and you will lose a few centimeters as it compresses). Now you are ready to plant your garden with Grass Root Gardens ‘chemical-free’ perennials. No muss, no fuss, particularly no digging. Once you have planted, water the plants in well and mulch with real cedar mulch 5cm/2″ thick on garden bed. Please pay attention to leave a 5cm/2″ diameter of dirt around each plant as mulch up to the stems and leaves could rot your new plants. Water the new garden well until established. Once established(usually the following year), most perennials will thrive with 3cm/1″ of precipitation weekly.


Sit back, relax, weed, relax, then watch miracles happen!

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