Gardening Challenges And A Wacky Idea That Just May Work

Welcome to the 299th Metamorphosis Monday!

I have something kinda wacky to share this week. You’ll either think it’s the most brilliant thing you’ve ever heard or you’ll think it’s completely NUTS…pun intended! But before I share my wacky plan, here’s what I’ve been up to…planting Double Mint Gardenias. So far I’ve had two planting sessions and I still don’t have all five of them in, but I’m making progress.

Double Mint Gardenias


Each time I head out to plant them, I’m good for about two shrubs and then I’m done. Sounds ridiculous, right? Why in the world am I just getting two shrubs into the ground each time?

Double Mint Gardenias


Here’s why, ALL of this “stuff” came out of just one hole, the hole you see in the picture above. I have to fight for every inch of dirt I remove…so many rocks and so many BIG roots! So, after fighting my way through the roots and the rocks, I’m just too tired to tackle planting more than two gardenias at the time. It’s taking a while to get them all in but I’m slowly getting there. Just one left to go!  Update for afternoon of 10-21-14: Last gardenia is in! Yipee! Happy Dance!!!

Double Mint Gardenias


I’m planting the gardenias way out from the Savannah Holly since the holly should reach about four feet out in every direction in a few years. I’ve spaced the gardenias approximately 3-1/2 to 4 feet apart since the information that came with them said they usually grow to around 3 to 3-1/2 feet wide. It’s so hard spreading them out this far because it looks weird now but I’m forcing myself to do it…trying to do it the right way.

Double Mint Gardenias


The Wacky Idea

Another interesting and somewhat funny challenge I had during my first gardenia-planting session involved that big tree you see there across the yard. That’s an oak tree and the entire time I was planting gardenias, it was bombarding me with its acorns. I think it’s paying me back for cutting down another oak tree two summers ago…taking out its revenge!

Curved Brick Walkway


You can see in this picture where the oak tree is in relation to where I was planting. It literally felt like someone was throwing rocks at me the entire time. lol I have to tell you, acorns hurt like the devil when they hit you in the head. They don’t feel so great on the back either.

Off and on throughout my planting session, the wind was blowing like crazy. Each time it did, I had to stop, back away from my planting and wait until it died down. It was blowing so much, sometimes I just toughed it out and lets the rocks acorns hit me in the head and back. It seemed like hundreds were falling each time.

At one point I seriously thought of going to the garage to get my biking helmet. It was sheer pride that kept me from doing it. I just couldn’t bring myself to wear a helmet to plant gardenias. What would the neighbors think?! lol So I just kept digging and planting, trying to keep my head low until the rocks stopped raining from the sky.

Landscaping A FrontYard


That whole area of my yard is thick with acorns now…we’re talking a gazillion acorns! They make walking in the yard impossible…like walking on thousands of marbles. You can see how really thick they get in this photo below taken a few years back before I sodded the yard.



So I started wondering, what is going to be the best and easiest way to get up all those annoying acorns so I can walk in the yard AND so I don’t have forty eleven billion oak trees sprouting up everywhere in a few months. My grass was just cut a few days ago and that didn’t get them up. So I did what I always do when I have a problem…went to Google for advice.

It turns out, they make a nut-removing machine. Did you know there was such a thing? Folks use it for every thing from removing nuisance nuts like forty eleven billion acorns to sucking up wanted nuts, like pecans underneath pecan trees. Only problem is, it costs $500! Spending $500 to remove all the acorns out of my grass would be like adding insult to injury…not gonna happen.

So, I Googled a little more and guess what I discovered?! There are folks out there making YouTube videos showing how great Wet Vacs are at sucking up acorns. No kidding! I found one HERE where a woman shows how she vacuums up her acorns and I found another one HERE where a guy used his wet vac to get them off his driveway.

Vacuuming Up Acorns


Remember when I built my cubby organizer? See that orange thing in the background. You know what that is! I’m seriously thinking about giving the acorn-vacuuming thing a try.

Maybe I should wear my biking helmet while I’m at it, you know…just so the neighbors have full confirmation that I’m completely nuts. Acorn nuts, that is! HA!

Cubby Organizer, Pottery Barn Knock-off_wm


Ever vacuumed up acorns with a wet vac? Got any last words of advice or caution before I give it a try? πŸ™‚

Looking forward to the other Before and Afters for this Met Monday!

Met Monday


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  1. I have the same kind of soil, hard and full of rocks, I don’t like planting that much because of the soil. Last time we had to open like 5 holes in the ground, I gave my husband that task. His body was all sore almost for a week after that. πŸ˜€
    You made me laugh with the story of the shooting acorns! πŸ™‚ I would’ve wear the helmet.

    • I can sympathize with him, Cristina. Ha! It’s hard work but it’s so satisfying to see the plant in the ground and to give it a good drink of water afterwards.

  2. Great idea, Susan! Sometimes we need to think outside the box from the “normal” purposes of tools. You’ve come up with a great one here. Your yard and plantings are looking very nice. You’ll be very glad later you spaced your shrubs properly! Thanks for another fun link-up, too.

    • Thanks, Kim! All the credit has to go to those brave wet-vac YouTube pioneers who paved the way for us weary, acorn-pummeled souls. πŸ™‚ Hee, hee

  3. Susan, I think vacuuming up nuts is a brilliant idea along with wearing your bike helmet for safety πŸ™‚ We have a hickory tree that’s raining nuts down right now, ouch!

  4. My brother-in-law uses his vacuum to clear away all that tree debris too! Worth a try anyway. Your yard is looking beautiful! XO

    • Thanks, Christy! I may rake some into piles for the squirrels, then vacuum up the rest. This might explain why the squirrels haven’t been raiding the feeder lately…their bellies are full of acorns! πŸ™‚

  5. Thanks so much for the party!!


  6. Susan, you have given me a laugh this morning. I have no nut advise, but I understand why the squirrels love you so much. It is a true squirrel smorgasbord in your yard.

    Years ago, we planted shrubs thinking they were too far apart we planted them close. In three years we had to pull out every other one. Lessons learned… That old saying about the first year they sleep, second year they leap, third year they creep is true.

    • It is! They are fat and happy right now…rubbing those little squirrel bellies. I wish they would come get the rest of them out of my yard and “squirrel” them away for the winter!
      I’ve done the same thing with plants and shrubs so I’m trying hard to not do that again. It’s so tempting to plant them closer together!

  7. Where there’s a will there’s a way, a gal has got to do what she has to do. Anything is worth a try huh? The yard is looking beautiful. fondly ~lynne~

  8. After planting most of our garden…..and dealing with rocks…I have now decided to hire someone.It wears me out digging with all of those rocks! Thanks so much for hosting!

    • I wish I knew someone to hire for little jobs. I had a guy come twice to help me but he lives two hours away so when he comes, he’s here for the whole day. So I have to wait until I have a full days worth of work to make it worth the trip and expense. This is really good exercise for me, too….I so need that! πŸ™‚

  9. A friend of ours came over to our house to vacuum acorns in our yard! His granddaughter in FL was coming to visit and she loves them as they are a novelty to her! He brought his shop vac and it is sure a fast way to pick them up!

    • If I glue the hats back on these, they might be worth saving. For some reason my tree drops them without their little hats. I have bald acorns!

  10. Susan, you crack me up. Your yard looks beautiful. I can’t wait to see what it looks like when everything is in and starts to fill out. Thanks for hosting. Have a great week. Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

  11. I chuckled only out of empathy. We have a large Oak tree in the back yard with tons of acorns and we have a tin roofed car port – the falling acorns sound like gun shot – I see all of these tiny acorns and contemplate how to get them up – I’ll share this solution with Dearest – we are fighting all of those baby acorn trees too. Also, we’ve been digging things up, transplanting – I’m downsizing my gardens to what I can manage to more enjoy the garden -which means more grass for Dearest – he’s quite happy πŸ™‚
    Wonderful to join your party – I do appreciate you hosting!

    • They are LOUD when they hit the roof, I know what you mean. My small front porch has a metal roof and every once in a while, one makes it that far over. When they bounce, they sound like they could break a window out! lol Thanks, Kathy!

  12. Your yard is beautiful, Susan….Christine

  13. You certainly did create quite the visual of yourself getting pounded by acorns! I would probably opt for a wide-brimmed hat — it would deflect those little villains a little bit. My hubby has a landscaping vacuum to clean up leaves and other debris in the yard. It’s fairly light-weight and has a shoulder strap, so you can wear it while you use it. I think he got it at Home Depot.

    Thanks so much for hosting another great party, Susan!

    • Carol, I’ve seen my neighbor using something similar each year to get up his leaves. Do you know if it’s strong enough to pick up acorns? I may try the wet vac first since I already have one, but I would be super tempted to buy the leaf vac if your hubby says it will pick up acorns, too! πŸ™‚

  14. I would wear the bike helmet and, yes, vaccum them up! Don’t use a bag so you can dump them in your yard waste recycle if you have that service. Too funny! I wanted some acorns for a fall display, can’t find any though we have oak trees. Seems the squirrels and chipmunks get to them first!

  15. I would love to plant some gardenias. Years ago my parents lived in Tyler, Texas and my Mom had gardenias outside her kitchen and breakfast room. When the weather was cool enough, she would open the windows and the fragrance was so beautiful! Love the tip about the shop vac. It would really help me pick up all the pecan shells left behind by the squirrels. Thanks for another Met Monday. Just think ~ next week will the the 300th!!

    Big Texas Hugs,
    Susan and Bentley

    • Hard to believe we’re going to hit 300! Wowza! Oh, I can’t wait until these bloom, Susan…maybe all that hole diggin’ is going to be worth it! πŸ™‚

  16. Susan, I can’t wait to hear how the wet vac worked on the acorns. I’m wondering about walnuts. We have a beautiful old Walnut tree in our office yard. In the Fall, walking into our office is a danger zone. In addition to falling walnuts, I truly believe squirrels throw the walnuts at us! When they hit the roof, I think we are having a hail storm. I can’t wait to see your yard in the Spring. It’s going to be beautiful! laurie (P.S. Wear the helmet and give the neighbors a good laugh!)

    • I bet it would work on walnuts, too…if they aren’t too big to go up the hose thingy. I wouldn’t put it past those mischievous squirrels! lol I’m pretty sure the one that keeps plucking leaves off my hibiscus on the deck is trying to drive me crazy! lol

  17. Sounds like a great idea to me! Keep us posted! Hugs…Debbie

  18. I’d love to see you out in your front yard in a helmet – HA! I have the same problem with acorns at my house. We have about six huge oak trees in our front yard. You’re right – those things hurt! I think that vacuuming them up with a shop vac is a great idea. Thank you for hosting!

  19. Well now, I would love to see you in your front yard, donning your bike helmet and wet vaccing acorns!! Hilarious! We have the same problem, but I refuse to vaccuum my lawn!! Your gardenias will be gorgeous, but have you ever considered hiring someone to plant them? πŸ™‚ Thanks for the party Susan~

  20. I think it’s a great idea…except I don’t know if they will damage the filter housing. I’d check it frequently to make sure when you start, but otherwise it’s a brilliant idea.

    Susan, I’ve done something similar, I used my shop vac to vacuum up sunflower seed hulls in the spring from feeding the birds all winter. There was a big pile of them in my garden and scooping and raking seemed endless. I vacuumed them right up.

    I’ll look forward to hearing how it all works out!

  21. Hi Susan, Thanks for the giggle! I can imagine you wearing a bike helmet while planting. Thanks for hosting and have a great week.

  22. Wear the helmet, and be sure to have someone take a video/picture. Hilarious. I have a Toro leaf blower/vacuum that I love, but just wish it had a wider head attachment on it. The round tube is tedious for sucking up the debris, so I would use the widest head attachment you have.

  23. Oh no! We are new to a yard with lots of oak trees and acorns all over the place! Will they really sprout little acorn trees all over if we don’t get them up? I’d better get the vacuum going!!! Thanks for sharing and for hosting.

    • Yep, and they send down a big ol tap root so unless you pull out the baby trees as soon as they come up, they are nearly impossible to get out of the ground. It’s not as big an issue in the lawn as it is in the island and flower beds…that’s where they really like to take hold.

  24. We had the same problem with our old home with tiny little pinecones the size of acorns or smaller. We started out blowing them into a pile and sweeping them up, but also began to rely on the good old shop vac. Now, what are you going to create with all those acorns? You know the saying…if there are a lot of acorns, it is going to be a cold winter.

  25. AuburnCathy says

    It is required to post a video of any yard vacuuming on YouTube πŸ˜‰

  26. Thank you for hosting! Laughed with you at the acorn story. DH vacuumed the acorns from our yard one year when they were especially prolific. He says “Go for it” but try to avoid the leaves if possible because they can clog the vacuum hose. Worked for him — even though people (and yes, his wife too) stopped to take pictures of this guy vacuuming his front lawn!! LOL! Good luck!

  27. Love the idea of using a shop vac to suck up those acorns. I have tons too. May just have to use this too and yes the neighbors will think I have lost my mind. Have a fun week!

  28. I just gathered up a handful of acorns this weekend when we went to see my sone at college. We don’t have trees with acorn around our house. Wish I was there to take some off your hands. Thanks for hosting!

    Shannon –

  29. crumpety cottage says

    I think it makes perfect sense AND I think you should have worn the helmet. πŸ™‚

  30. Susan, So glad you wrote about this. I’m going to try it. My leaf vacuum mulches and I think the acorns might break it. Carla

  31. Thanks for hosting! I laughed with you at the acorn story. DH vacuumed the acorns from our yard one year when they were especially prolific. He says “Go for it” but try to avoid the leaves if possible as they can clog the vacuum hose. It worked for him — though people (and yes, his wife too) stopped to take pictures of this guy vacuuming his lawn! LOL Good luck!

  32. Your NOT NUTS….I have used a wet vac for years to pick up acorns. Couldn’t stand the thought of all those little trees coming up next spring and having to deal with pulling them all. Funny story….several years ago my son’s girlfriend call and ask him what he was doing? He said, “you wouldn’t believe it if I told you. My mom has me vacuuming the yard and flower beds”. I use that wet vac for cleaning out all of my flower beds. Much easier for me than using a rake and bending over for hours.

    • Ha! love it…too funny! This all reminds me of an Erma Bombeck story I read years ago. She was talking about her neighbor next door who was like a Martha Stewart on steroids. She said her house was so immaculate and everything so perfect that she caught her out in the yard waxing the garden hose. lol Erma would have had a good time with us all vacuuming up acorns, wouldn’t she?

  33. Rattlebridge Farm says

    Susan, I love the gardenias. Can you just imagine the fragrance! I sympathize wholeheartedly with the hole-digging. Each time I add something to my flower beds, I need a drill and the Brawney Paper Towel lumberjack. Your idea about the acorns in genius! Have a wonderful week.

  34. My husband says go for it, but be sure there is a deflector in place so that the acorns don’t shred the filter for the motor. Sounds like it should work if you wait til they are all down. Then, it’s planting time too! Enjoy the beautiful “fall” days!

  35. Susan ~ I would give up on appearing normal and go for the helmet! I am not a hole digger because I just don’t have the strength so I commend you on your progress. Love your vacuum idea!

  36. I would never have thought to use a wet vac for picking up acorns. They do have to go one way or another or many will take root and become annoying saplings thanks to being buried by squirrels. Your yard is taking shape, and you have my admiration for doing so much of the work.

  37. I think it’s a great idea Suzan – I use the wet vac to vacuum up all of those
    ” helicopters ” that fall around the pool all summer !!!
    My neighbors already know I’m nuts lol
    Thanks so much for the party

  38. Oh Susan! We live nestled back in the woods and are surrounded by oak and hickory trees. Our trees are very old and tall. I totally understand your issue. There have been times our entire from yard in a solid nut “carpet”. You can not walk on the grass! We blow ours off with the leaf blower, which takes forever. My husband got the grand idea one year to run our riding lawn mower over them and the nuts turned into little missiles, with two of them hitting our home, leaving small holes in our siding! The shop vac idea is brilliant! You really must get out there with your vac and a helmet! You just might start a new gardening attire style! πŸ™‚


    • Shelly, mine used to a nut carpet before I had one tree removed…it was awful trying to walk in the yard so I completely sympathize! Oh my gosh…who would have thought that would happen…and they would leave holes! Yikes! I’ll remember that and stay out of the yard when the grass is being cut! lol I’m going to give it a try. I think I’ll wait a little while so the squirrels can have at them…then whatever is left, I’ll try the vacuum thing.

  39. I love my wet vac, I use it for everything. I dont have acorns, but I have a tree that sheds its leaves all year long and I use that wet vac to pick up those leaves. Give it a try. I admire your energy…..

  40. “Cracking” up at the image of you in a helmet shop-vacing the yard – but I actually think is a great idea! I’ll be looking forward to hearing how it went. And you’ll be SO glad you spaced your plants far enough apart. Over the years I’ve had to move or remove many a plant that got too big for it’s space.

  41. Acorn vacuuming may not be such a bad idea…. My neighbor vacuumed up the cotton tree seed clouds that covered his yard…. have a great week…. πŸ™‚
    xox, Crystelle

  42. Regality (aka The Quing) says

    Sounds brilliant. Let us know how it works out. Btw, I’ve been known to use the regular vacuum to subdue clouds of whiteflies when they inundated plants on my patio.

  43. The wet vac sounds like a great solution, but I’m laughing at the thought of the helmet, vacuum and nosy neighbor combo. Thanks for hosting, and have a great week! πŸ™‚

  44. Carolyn Price says

    You are definitely younger than I am!! I can picture with the helmet on and, were it me, it wouldn’t matter what the neighbors thought!
    I laughed to picture you wearing the helmet only because I did something similar and must have looked a little strange to my neighbors, too. When I had carpal tunnel surgery, I had to cut the grass for a few weeks with a big, Pampered Chef oven mitt on. Once, I forgot which hand to wave with … and, you guessed it, up in the air went that huge terry mitt! Oh well!
    Loved what was posted about the first 3 years of plant growth. I’ll remember that!
    That corner of the house will look terrific!

  45. Carolyn Price says

    I can picture YOU with ….

  46. Now, that gave me a chuckle!! I’d definitely wear the helmet or a large sun hat……..the wet vac sounds like a good idea, but I’d worry about the filter, those nuts are pretty hard and could cause damage.

    Now, to make you laugh in return……I recently bought a leaf blower/vac….the leaves in my back yard are knee deep, and this old lady isn’t as agile any more! Yesterday I assembled the machine, and wanted to test how I could handle it, it’s kinda heavy, so what did I do?? I vacuumed the garage to rid it of leaves and debris that collects. All I did was create a dust storm, and it was blinding, I almost choked!! Thank goodness the neighbors weren’t out to view my stupidity!! Now everything is covered in dust…….

    But, it worked like a champ on the driveway and front lawn gathering all the mini pears that fall from my ornamental pear tree. And I was able to use my snow shovel to gather them up and put in trash bags. So, that felt good!!!

    It’s hard to plant shrubs, not like putting in annuals…..your yard is looking great!! xoxo

  47. How hysterical… I was just getting online to find out what to do with all the acorns that have dropped where we now live when- your blog posted! At least now I know how to pick them up – but there must be something useful to do with them all??? C’mon all you crafty people!??

  48. I just rake little piles in my
    yard and let the squirrels take care of the acorns.

    • I think I’ll do that and vacuum up the rest. I’m going to wait a couple of weeks to give them time to eat some more…then I’ll rake some into piles for them…then maybe vacuum the remaining. They should have some fat little bellies right now!

  49. What a great idea to try on the acorns. I may just try it too! The other day when I was getting in the car, an acorn fell and barely missed my nose! You are right, they feel like getting hit by rocks!

  50. Susan, Your yard is beautiful. On a recent homes tour here in Kansas City, I saw large hurricane glass containers with acorns in the bottom, then a large candle. Just like substituting acorns for the usual sand around a candle. It was cute! I enjoy your posts, Thank you so much!

    • Yeah, I love that! Maybe my bald acorns would look good used that way. They aren’t very pretty alone since they never have their little hats after they fall.

  51. It sounds to me like you have a Tom Sawyer type job. I bet the kids in the neighborhood would pay you to have a turn at vacuuming up the acorns. πŸ™‚

  52. Susan, you need a suit of armour. Only problem with that is, they are not easy to bend in!! πŸ™‚ You could always tell the neighbours you were practicing for Halloween as the Tin Man of Oz!!! πŸ™‚
    Do gardenias survive the winter in your area?
    Thanks for the morning laugh!! πŸ™‚

    • Well…it’s like this. I’ve never had any problem until this past winter when we had the ice storm. It almost killed my one large gardenia bush…and it almost killed a lot of the gardenias around this area. But my bush lived and a friend of mine said all hers have come back, too. So normally it’s not a problem…but the ice storms do cause some problems.
      A suit of armour sounds like a good idea! lol

  53. That’s a great idea Susan. Hey…whatever works right? Your flowerbed is looking great btw. I have the same problem with planting here. Roots makes a 15 minute job take 3 times as long.

    Thanks so much for hosting and hope your week is great. πŸ™‚

  54. Hi Susan. I’ve never heard of vacuuming up nuts, but it sounds like a great idea! I can’t wait to hear your results! Thanks for hosting today and thanks again for featuring my Orange & Turquoise Mantel this weekend! Have a great week.

  55. I’d love to know if the wet-vac works on the acorns. Not sure if trees have cycles or the squirrels are scarce, but I have never had so many acorns as I do this year!

  56. It’s going to work better than a leaf vac…but I suggest placing the wetvac on a small wagon for easier mobility. See if you can get an extension for the wand. The helmet is a great idea! You should bag up the acorns and sell online for decorative purposes. πŸ™‚

  57. Susan, I would have worn the helmet, the heck with the neighbors:) We always have used a leaf BLOWER and blown nuts into piles and then raked them into bags or whatever. You are one determined woman, you amze me with all that you tackle on your own. Thanks for the party too!!!

    • I almost did, Pinky! I don’t think my leaf blower is strong enough to blow them out of the grass…I may try that just in case. I have a pretty wimpy leaf blower.

  58. Cherylan Hannahs says

    Susan….We,too, have the acorn problem. Huge oak overlooks our deck and drops acorns all over it. Some years much more than others. Our first year in the house our son, age 27, was sitting on the deck when he got bombarded!!! He ran in the house, like a five year old, ranting and raving about our dangerous tree!!!!!
    I also have used my shop vac for acorns, but years ago, before children, we bought a newly constructed house. We told them not to do the landscaping of shrubs and tree, THANK GOODNESS. As I stared digging near the house, I hit something hard about 8 inches down, had to keep digging a wider and wider hole……until I was able to unearth the for sale sign lying horizontally down in the hole!!!! Later I was planting a tree down near the sidewalk. I dug down and hit pea gravel…widen hole…more gravel….started to use a plastic cup to get gravel out, only to have more and more….so I got the shop vac out and stared to vacuum them out. I ended up with a huge hole, but no more gravel!!! Yes, I had neighbors stop over to see this silly woman…..but most ended up thinking it was a smart solution as well as wondering what was under their yards!!!

    • lol I’m with your son! They are dangerous! πŸ™‚ That’s wild that you found the For Sale sign! It really does make you wonder what is buried around our homes!

  59. I always run into some rocks when I dig here and occassionally some roots. It does slow you down and requires extra steps. I don’t blame you for only doing a couple of shrubs at a time. I think it’s smart to give yourself a break in between.
    Ouch on the nuts! I know what you are talking about because we have the same thing going on and I could hear them hitting the roof of the house! They come from far above and gain a lot of momentum! We have a leaf sucking machine we bought many years ago that is powered by the garden tractor and it has a hose you can use to suck up things like the acorns with. We have so many leaves it’s ridiculous to try to rake them. I should think the shop vac would work. Those things really are capable of a lot.

  60. Barbara Anne says

    What a hoot! I can say that because we, too, are enduring the rain of acorns and other nuts so our yard looks as nutty as yours does. We’ve discusses whether pith helments or hard hats are reasonable garden attire and decided YES! Heads can be hard but theses are nuts accelerated by gravity and (sometimes) wind. They are to be taken seriously. Better a snicker from the neighbors than a head injury. πŸ™‚

    Thank God we chose NOT to get a metal roof!! Imagine the noise – and the dents!


    • Linda S. in NE says

      I was going to suggest going to an army-surplus type store and purchasing a camouflage army helmet. Is that aka a pith helmet? I was thinking with the camouflage idea, the neighbors might not even be able to see you in the yard. With your talent, you could probably whip up a little “cozy” for the bright orange shop vac, and make that invisible too! : )

    • lol Barbara Anne, a hard hat sounds like an awesome idea to me! Can you imagine everyone with oak trees having to wear hard hats while gardening for a few weeks of every year. Too funny!

  61. LOL Susan,
    that’s too funny! Can you believe, I envy you those acorns? Yes, I really do!
    I am actually looking for them and am collecting them like crazy, because I love adding them to my fall decorations. I already have several baskets and glass hurricanes filled with cute ones, that still have their caps, even though hubby repeatedly (but unsuccessfully) tries to make me feel bad about that, because of the “poor and cute” squirrels that will have no food because of me! Ha! I’ve never heard of “famished” squirrels in my neighborhood! Plus, we do have several parks and even a Japanese garden close to us, so I guess squirrels are smart enough to know where to find food… πŸ™‚
    Susan, if you decide to give that wet vac a try and you also decide to wear that helmet… please take a picture for us! And if it is too hard to shoot a pic with just one hand with your camera, so please take at least a “selfie”! πŸ™‚ I swear, If I were your neighbor I’d never ever think you’re (acorn) nuts but perhaps YOU would think that of me! Ha!
    ~Hugs to you~

  62. I love the shop vac idea! why spend money when you have something that already works. As for body protection from those acorns…do what ya gotta do. When I was reading…I was thinking..wear a helmet, but that does not save the rest of your body. Have to admit I kind of chuckled. I do things in the yard, and guess my neighbors kind of wonder “what is that woman doing?” ha! When we lived on our farm…I had no witnesses to my yard projects. Have a great week. Thanks for the link parties!

  63. I’m thinking this is a saw tooth oak and the deer love, love, love these. My husband has planted a few here and there for the deer, he would love to have this problem, lol.

    • Jo May, I turned onto my street about a week ago and three deer were standing in the front yard of the house on the very corner…and we are in the suburbs! I was so worried they were going to go into the street! I started to get out of the car to shoo them away from the street but I was afraid they would do the opposite and run out into the road. They ended up going in the back yard of that house…not sure where they went after that. Maybe I need to box up all my acorns and mail them to you! So deer eat them?

  64. I’ll trade you your acorns for my black walnuts. They are the size of baseballs and I have been knocked senseless twice from them!

  65. Thanks Susan, for hosting. I feel your pain as I have have similar instances.

  66. Go for it, Susan! The shop vac is a great idea. I use it for vacuuming “helicopters” from between the patio stones–side benefit, it also cut down on the weeds–must’ve vacuumed up the weed seeds, as well. I use a Bosch drill w/a very long auger bit to help me dig holes. It’s also useful as a mini tiller, when I’m weeding beds.

  67. I can’t wait to hear if the vacuuming of the nuts works. I used to use our shop vac for cleaning very stubborn stains in the carpet but never for nuts. Thanks for hosting and good luck with your acorns.

  68. I can relate to the nut problem. Limbs of a hickory nut tree on the property next door hang over my courtyard. This time of the year, there are certain times of the day I avoid going out there. Really bad when the squirrels crack them and drop the debris down – especially in the afternoon and early evening hours. Hard hat season for sure! Have an Oak tree with limbs overhanging also, but it is not nearly as bad, as the acorns are much smaller.
    Enjoy your evening.

  69. We’ve never had acorns in any yard I’ve lived – but was at a party not long ago and sat underneath one…haha…..not for long…they DO HURT! I couldn’t believe it – felt like rocks being thrown at our backs and head. Hilarious. Couldn’t move away fast enough. : – )

    Susan, don’t beat yourself up for not having all your planting done in one fell swoop. There’s a reason landscaping laborers make their money – it’s HARD WORK!

    We have clay here, oh my gosh it’s soooo laborous to plant stuff. I never do I hire it out now, ever since I broke both my arms. Just can’t do it any more.

    Anyway, thanks for hosting. Good luck with your garden planting. Such a pretty yard you have! : – )

  70. There are two big oak trees on the right of way in back of my fence. They shed very small acorns onto my yard. Walking out there is like walking on marbles! There is no way I could possibly pick them all up by hand or by raking. I can’t wait to try sucking them up with my shop vac! What a great idea!

  71. This is hilarious! Oh not the getting hit on the head….but the wet vac thing! If you do this…and I really hope you do…cuz I want to know if it really works….I request that you take a selfie with your bike helmet on! Please! I think it’s a fantastic idea…and not ” nuts” at all! πŸ˜‰

  72. I have TOTALLY used a wet vac to vacuum up acorns before! We had this crazy tree in the backyard of our rental house several years back that dropped these sap-filled acorns. Before I realized it, they had carpeted the back yard and ruined a season’s worth of kids clothes and shoes. So, I went at them with a shop vac. Worked like a charm!

  73. Susan a few years ago my husband started using his wet vac to suck the wet soggy leaves from our gutters. He then moved to using it for the leaves in the flower beds and yes for our acorns! We also had a sweet gum tree which drop like acorns on the ground. We saved one our sons radio flyer wagons and use it for all kinds of things, yard work, beach trips etc. my sweetly puts the vac on the wagon and it moves across the yard a lot easier then the wheels on the as the vac tends to get bogged down in the grass. We our gutters were fairly high up (a two story) so he used rope and a pulley to hang it from the latter as he went along the house.

    • Ingenious! I’ll put mine on top of my garden cart…that’s a great idea! Thanks Peggy! You know, these folks who make/sell shop vacs could make a fortune if they started advertising them as good acorn picker-uppers and gutter cleaning devices. They need to make a version that you can wear like a back pack for doing the gutters. πŸ™‚

      • Thanks Susan. I must apologize for all those typos! I can actually write English! I am taking 800 mg Motrin for a toothache, soon to be a root canal in the morning, so I’m a little sluggish this evening ;-). By the way, I have used the vac myself to find a diamond from a ring I lost once while in the garage working on a Christmas craft project. I put a washcloth over the nozzle with a rubber band and went around the garage floor. It took me ten minutes but there it was on the washcloth! Your right, a back pack is a great idea!

  74. Okay, this is my second comment here, but I just have to tell you about acorns for decorating. A few years back Martha Stewart was decorating her table for fall using acorns. Since I have them by the truck loads, I did the same before having guests for dinner. The night before, I decorated my table with candles, gourds etc and used lots of acorns. The next evening while setting the table, I saw what appeared to be rice on my decorations, lots of it. It was small worms that had come out of the acorns!!! Upon closer inspection, close to where the caps attached, most of the acorns had a very small hole in them. WORM HOLES!!!! So, ladies, check your nuts for worms before bringing them into your homes! πŸ˜‰ It is creepy to have this happen on your table where you eat. Thank God I saw it before anyone showed up!

    • Oh my gosh, Shelly…that is a riot! These things ALWAYS happen right before we have company arriving, don’t they? I had heard that worms sometimes get in them. I can just imagine the look on your face! Good advice about checking them out thoroughly before using them!

  75. GREAT IDEA with the shop vac. We have so many acorns in the back and I feel like our backyard is being overtaken by squirrels! Totally using your advice this weekend!

  76. I loved this post. It was funny and educational at the same time! Using the wet vac on those acorns is brilliant. That wet vac is good for all kinds of things. I have a friend whose husband, years ago, would take the wet vac inside their house and just vacuum up everything all over the floors. They had small kids and it was usually very messy. He was hilarious, but it did keep the mess down……………either because my friend and her kids ran aound and picked up everything of importance or it just got sucked up!

  77. bobbi duncan says

    I am cracking up right now envisioning you in that helmet with the wet vac…you are a riot! It’s particularly amusing because you have such a great sense of humor that I can see it all so clearly… you getting pelted while saying “dag gonnit, you rotten little squirrel bait. I’m gonna stay out here until every last one of you is sucked up!” When we bought our first home I fell in love with the fact that part of a very old pecan grove came with our property (these trees were ginormous and produced hundreds of pounds of the best pecans I’ve ever eaten. Family and friends were happy recipients each Xmas). Well, let me tell you, you don’t want one of those, still in their outer shell covering, to hit you in the head, nor can you walk on the lawn (ouch,ouch, ouch!). Wish I’d known about that wet vac idea back then because it sure would have saved my back.

  78. Out here in Seattle, I’ve seen acorn shells sold as (expensive) mulch. Don’t know if you’d like the look, but sounds like you have plenty! πŸ™‚ Love the wetvac idea. And nice work on the planting. If you have to do more, I highly recommend a digging fork (looks like a pitchfork, but heavier) — great for rocky clay.

  79. You crack me up with the acorn story! Even funnier is the vaccuming of them. Gosh if you do that, you could send them to me for my crafts and decorating! Just make sure they are worm free lol! Our acorns here in Florida are little and I’m use to the large ones in Michigan where I grew up. Oh and to protect your whole body maybe you could rig up an umbrella off the top of your bike helmet. That surely would give the neighbors a laugh. You’re too funny! The yard is looking great, wish it was mine! Have fun planting and thanks for hosting the party! Have a great one! πŸ™‚

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