June 5, 2012

Sold out
Courtesy iStockphoto/Thinkstock

Hearing the words “out of stock” is normally a precursor to frustration. That is especially true living in the country. As more and more lumberyards have gone under or (as the politically correct term would have it) consolidated, we find ourselves driving farther and farther to get the supplies we need. This past week, my wife and I made a 40-mile drive to the nearest lumberyard to pick up a few supplies, including a couple of cattle panels. The dreaded term was what the store clerk said when I asked where they were.

While we don’t have any cattle to contain, we planned to use the 52-inch-high by 16-foot-long welded-wire panels to trellis our tomatoes and pole beans. There’s no hurry on the tomatoes, but the beans will start stretching out any day now. Our plan was to anchor one end of the panel to the ground by the beans and curve it over the garden path to the next bed.

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After going to a second store that didn’t carry them at all, we started to rethink our plan. We do have rebar (my favorite all-purpose yard material) that we’ve used in the past. While the arch idea was nice, we can always try it another year. Instead, I’ll be driving in some posts and rebending some rebar.

We saved $35, not that we won’t find some use for that saved money. I still want to try those panels. That’s the great thing with gardening. There is always next year.

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