Post last updated: October 10th, 2018

When my sister, Ms. Priss, invited me to Atlanta to see the Atlanta Botanical Gardens, she was horrified to learn of my desire to go rock hunting while there. I guess she thought I would want to do something cultural like the High Museum. What can I say? I need a decent rock collection more than an infusion of high brow art.

I must admit to oohing and ahhing over these very large rocks in her front yard…

Sister rocks-013

The first thing Priss did Saturday morning was hand me a shovel. “You can have any rock in my back yard that you can dig up. We can’t dig a hole to plant a bush without hitting rock.” Can you imagine? Those of us with rock envy would like to imagine a scenario where it was not necessary to BUY rocks for the landscape. And, of course, the weather turned chilly just after Poppie and I arrived. So I was out there in a pair of denim shorts and a light jacket pointing a shovel at some rocks while my evil sister took photos of my pasty white legs.

You are seeing this photo only to show you the hill and backyard terrain
You are seeing this photo only to show you the hill and backyard terrain and no, I am not a spring chicken
Photo credit: Priss

Digging up a rock was no problem. There were plenty at ground level. I got a small one right away but wanted something bigger. I knew exactly where I wanted it to go in Poppie’s front yard. The first one I tried to dig up was too big and too square. I tried again. My second digging expedition revealed the perfect rock. Unfortunately, I was unable to help Priss get it up the hill to the front yard because of my back injuries. She and her husband then had to schlep it up the hill for me and get it in the back of Poppie’s truck. It probably weighed a hundred pounds but it felt like four hundred. Very heavy.

My rock hunting in Priss’ back yard prompted her to pull out a printed dish towel she had purchased a while back just because it reminded her of me:  “Here in the South we don’t hide CRAZY. We parade it on the porch and give it a cocktail.” Just because she has more rocks than me, I’ve lost my marbles. The abuse!

On returning home late Monday, Poppie also found the big rock to be Very Heavy and used a hoe to pull it out of his truck right where I wanted it to go. As the rock tumbled from the back of the pick-up, the thud was probably heard throughout the neighborhood.

The shoe is there to help you see the size of the rock
The shoe is there to help you see the size of the rock
My original intention was not to show you my pasty white legs
Rocks are in full sun, will the moss disappear?

Wednesday, I dug a hole and submerged a third of the rock to make it too difficult for someone else with rock envy to remove it from my yard under cover of darkness. I placed the first rock I dug up in Priss’ yard slightly in front of it. Well, let me just show you.

Newly installed rocks
Newly installed rocks in front of Poppie’s house

Update August 14, 2017:  I found that I am not the only gardener with rock envy:

38 thoughts on “ROCK HUNTING”

  1. Love LOVE laughing my ass off! I have rock envy too. And way too many rock stories to share – except this one. Our trip out west a few years ago yielded a lovely collection of smallish rocks that, yes, I took to the post office and mailed them back home to myself. The postmaster laughingly joked and asked if I was mailing a box of rocks – to which Mr. C replied – don’t ask. The box arrived smashed to pieces with one lone rock left and one pine cone. I also collect pine cones.
    Your new rocks look lovely under the palm – they rock!

    1. Mrs. Coral – I’m so glad you got a laugh. I tried to make it funny but it just fell flat to my ears so I didn’t “tag” it under “Tickle Thy Funnybone.” I’ll bet next time you get a chance to add to your rock collection you won’t trust them to the dadgum post office. Love your last two words.

      1. Oh my Gosh, you have a whole collection of friends as crazy as you. I guess having all the rocks I need and then some I don’t suffer from the Rock Envy that you and your friends seem to suffer from, but I think mailing rocks to yourself maybe, just maybe might deserve another one of those special towels defining crazy…

  2. I love rocks in the yard and we’ve brought many home with us from northern climes. We just happen to also have a lot of concrete “rocks” in our back yard left over from what must have been a lot of construction over the last fifty years. We definitely dragged our big ones from our old house. Those look beautiful Linda, the way you put them in the yard. Looks like nature did it!

  3. They look beautiful in front of your Poppie’s house! Nice rocks – very sculptural. I hope the moss stays – I love moss – maybe if you put that side on the north side?

  4. I’m impressed. With your sister. That is real love to help your “crazy” relative to dig up a rock, get it UP a hill & into a truck bed. Kudos to your brother-in-law too. Course he has to live with your sister. The end result looks very nice and the memory will always be priceless.

    1. Yes, it can only be real love. My CRAZY sister – no need for the quotes – tried to kill me and my loving husband just so she could have a rock!

  5. And they even have moss growing on them! I definitely have rock envy! I love rocks, make that boulders, and I wish I had some like your sister’s. In fact, I do have one I want to move from deep in the woods to my woodland garden. It is HUGE, and it is covered in ferns! What I need is a piece of equipment that can move such things. I am told it can be done, for a price. But wouldn’t the look be priceless?

  6. The final destination for your rocks looks very nice, but I don’t think the moss will survive the Florida heat and sun. I do think you overlooked the portion of the story of me cringing in my side yard with rock in hand hoping that my neighbor would not see me and my wonderful husband struggling to carry a rock to the front. I was trying to shrink inside that rock so my neighbor would not know that the crazies had not only landed, but invaded my household. BTW, I did take note that although you mentioned your pasty white legs in your story, you failed to show any of the “action” photos of you digging up the rocks that showed your lovely pasty white legs.

    1. Ah, interesting Ms. Priss. You didn’t mention this horrific level of embarrassment at the time but I can see how it might have been embarrassing to be seen moving rocks around in a neighborhood so full of them that the residents don’t know what to do with an abundance of rocks. Do you suppose they were peeking out the blinds at you? As for the action photos, I had trouble posting even the one because Evie has made so much fun of my pasty white legs. A tan is another one of those things, like rocks, that I don’t possess.

  7. Nice rocks Jones! Priss, I’ll need 2 towels, one for me because I mailed your crazy sister a rock and I have rocks as base board in my hallway (honest). Then I’ll hafta have one for my pal Julie who mails me rocks from Ft Worth, TX because she knows I love them…and I’m even in CO where there is an abundance of rocks! Yep, we are having fun!

      1. After reading through all the comments, I don’t believe there are enough towels defining crazy for you and your friends. As a side note, rocks, though interesting to look at, can be a real pain in the rear when they reside in a spot where you want to plant something.

        1. Are you kidding me? Where were those towels made? China? India? Just order a case! And that shovel just don’t hold dirt about rocks being a pain in the rear. You dig a hole to plant something and hit a rock? The solution is a prime example of mangling two shovels with one rock — (1) you gift a rock to someone who suffers from Rock Envy, and, pretty soon, (2) you won’t have a rock problem.

  8. Crazy One, I don’t think you will need anymore rock seeds after your October trip to Atlanta. Enjoy your rocks!

  9. Ha, I totally understand, having lived years in rock envy before moving to the Northeast! I have, in fact, taken much smaller rocks than yours out of a relative’s yard in New Jersey and driven them to my garden in North Carolina. (People also thought I was nuts.) I am now in rock heaven here in MA with my boulders strewn along the side of my yard. I know you will enjoy your beautiful moss-covered rocks, and I hope that no other person driven mad by rock envy takes them out of your yard!

      1. No, I left them, knowing I was moving to the land of rocks. My adopted rocks looked a little out of place, anyway, being red iron rocks. (And heavier that most rocks their size, thanks to all that iron!) I did take my bench that was made out of stones, though!
        I am now going to see if I can get some moss to grow on some of my boulders.. that would make them just perfect!

        1. Hmph! I think you should have taken them with you. Instead of your adopted rocks being out of place, they would have been a conversation starter with new neighbors. I remember your stone bench! Hope it got there safe. I’m purty sure you can put buttermilk on your rocks to grow more moss.

        1. Good for you! It’s amazing how much they want for stepping stones and they aren’t even pretty like they used to be. About 20 years ago, I bought 3 that had river rock on the top. They were available everywhere at that time. You sure don’t get any river rocks anymore!

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