Friday, February 9, 2018

Garden Spellcraft: episode 1

This week, I channeled my inner wizard and pulled off two magical garden spells. 

If you're unfamiliar with garden magic, check with your local magical extension office for educational opportunities in your area. On occasion, they even offer ancient tomes and spell-scrolls at discounted rates to members of the community.

All set? Let's begin!

How to Make Squirrels Compost for You

This first spell is beginner level. It should be easy to cast for anyone already tapped into the arcane powers of physics and mental manipulation. The applications of this spell are many. For my uses, I trained the local squirrels to compost.

Spell Recipe:
PHASE 1: locate source origin.
PHASE 1: locate source origin.
My source origin is my neighbor's orange tree. The oranges will be the object, or source, I will use magical physics and mental manipulation of agents to control. Up against the fence, just out of the photo to the right, is the compost pile - that is my source destination.

PHASE 2: determine source path, and agents.
PHASE 2: determine source path, and agents.

My source path will be from the my neighbor's orange tree (bottom of picture) to my ash tree (top of picture). My agents will be any squirrels entering this demarcated region. I will use physics magic to contain this region, and set the rules within it. I will use mental manipulation to control the actions of my agents once they enter this zone.

Unfortunately, magic is resistant to photography, so getting a picture of PHASE 3 (my agent (squirrel) in action) is impossible. However, here you can see the end result:

PHASE 4: the end result of the completed spell.
PHASE 4: the end result of the completed spell.
To recap -- combining the above steps, I've created a zone between my neighbor's orange tree and my ash tree where I can manipulate the behavior of any agents entering that zone. My result is that squirrels dining on my neighbor's oranges get an irresistible urge to carry their prize over to my ash tree and do their dining on the branch right above my compost pile.

1/5 of the way through their dinner, they are then overcome with the irresistible urge to get a new orange -- abandoning the one they are currently dining on. Thus, they drop the orange, and it falls directly onto the top of my compost.

This is simple, self replicating magic folks, so apart from minor tweaking to adjust for branch growth or magic resistant squirrels, it requires very little upkeep. Though I would advise anyone adding oranges to their compost to also consider adding a worm compatibility filter. Typically, worms that occupy compost piles greatly dislike citrus. This can be overcome by adding a worm compatibility filter directly after phase 3. A well focused filter should last 4 - 6 months.

IMPORTANT NOTES: the magical aura of this spell is simple yet powerful; a little goes a long way! I used just enough to subliminally encourage the squirrels to use the ash tree as their perch, and to help aim the falling oranges so they kerplunk within the exact walls of the compost, even if it's windy.

Don't overdue it. You don't want squirrels launching oranges at your neighbor's windows, or oranges catapulting out of the tree and hitting the squirrels (well, unless you do). Keep your phases in the right order, and practice magical moderation, and everything will go swimmingly.

SIDE EFFECTS: mostly minor, physical realm consequences like juicy bonks on the head from falling  oranges, should you fail to calibrate the spell's trajectory correctly. Consequently, we do advise a wizard's hat or, in a pinch, a construction helmet, be worn at all times while working within the magical boundaries of this spell, just as a precaution.


How to Summon Horny Ladybugs

This spell is NOT for beginners! Though I discovered it by accident, I got lucky in its execution. If used incorrectly, this spell could have extreme consequences. So please pay attention:

This spell is a psychic conjuration spell of reversed intent, one that bridges the realms of the physical world and the blog-o-sphere. I know, cool right... but dangerous if abused. My application of this spell resulted in the arrival and copulation of a half dozen lady bugs, their official magical name being ladybirdicus aphid'eaticus.

Spell Recipe:

1. spark the spell with a language prompt from the non-physical realm, such as the internet {"Because I just had a much better idea for the prime real estate space they're occupying." - from my recent Harvest Monday blogpost} mixed with strong psychic feeling, either positive or negative ("man, I genuinely can't wait to rip out that stupid cinder block bed I made that has the dying favas and swiss chard so I can plant something better. I'm going to do that this weekend, for sure.")

2. Allow 24 hrs for the arcane magic to percolate, locate, and interpret your prompt and psychic feeling.

3. Return to the specified location or object (ie: the cinderblock bed) and observe the reversal --

Copulating Ladybugs

Bachelor/ette Ladybug

More Copulating Ladybugs

-- ladybugs copulating on the plants I need to rip out in order to remove the cinderblock bed. So now, I will no longer be able to remove the cinderblock bed (reversal) because of the forthcoming lady bug larvae that will be living on the plants there.

IMPORTANT NOTES: Though my discovery was accidental, this spell should ideally involve much careful planning --This is a realm bridging spell y'all, and a reversed intent spell no less -- plan accordingly! Only conjure in the physical realm! Do not conjure from, or into, the internet realm! Accidentally summoning unsuspecting members of the blog-o-sphere into your vegetable garden and inducing their copulation will not be appreciated!

Similarly, sending a hoard of digital, copulating bugs into the internet will be met with equal displeasure, and probably a visit from the NSA. Precision of language is key! Use official magical names whenever possible. Remember, Ladybirdicus aphid'eaticus and glitchicus interneticus are very different things, even though they are both bugs!

SIDE EFFECTS: Frustration/Elation, and any ramifications derived from the above two paragraphs.


That's it for this week! Hopefully you enjoyed this first episode of Garden Spellcraft. If you attempt any of the above spells, let me know how they turn out! I love to see how others tweak the recipes to best suit their garden needs.

Happy Casting Planting!


  1. I guess I need a new magic wand! Our neighbors have pecan trees, which the squirrels love. But instead of conjuring them over to the compost bins to eat the nuts, they only made it about half way. So they are sitting on the railing of the deck eating the pecans and leaving the shells all over the deck where they will surely not compost. I think I need more hocus-pocus, or else different squirrels!

    1. Ooo, maybe you have those new invasive magic resistant squirrels... I heard they're menacing the east coast this year. They haven't made it out west yet, and fingers crossed they never will! I'll send some magical vibes your way regardless -- maybe we can manipulate the blue jays into doing the clean-up for you. Worth a shot! And yeah, definitely send your magic wand in for a tune-up if it's losing effectiveness -- take care of your tools, Dave!


POSTING A COMMENT? You're awesome. I may not reply to every comment, but I do read them all! Sometimes I forget, or I have to prioritize posting new content if I'm on a time crunch. Or I may save my reply so I can address your question/comment in a future post.

Trolls will be thrown in the compost.