Sunday, April 3, 2011


From time to time, I'm going to post what I'm thinking about when I garden.  What do you think about? My mind seems to ramble from one topic to another. I guess in psychology it's called free association.
Here's one example:
It's dry
~ I need to water
~ Who invented the water hose?
~ My soil has a lot of organic matter
~ Good thing
~ My grandmother's vegetable garden
~ She wore a bonnet all the time
~ She was German
~ I liked helping her water
~ I wonder if anyone still wears a bonnet in the garden ~ the AMISH farmers do.

I dream of the Amish a lot. They choose to live without the electrical devices and hectic pace that we seem to hold on to with gusto.  I've always wanted to visit an Old Order Amish community and watch them plow with horses.
I've done a lot of research on this topic and a couple of years ago found out something startling: you don't have to go to Indiana, Ohio, or Pennsylvania to find the Amish.  We have one colony here in Texas. It's down in Bee county and it's hard to find. They value their privacy and there are no signs like AMISH COMMUNITY STRAIGHT AHEAD.
We went down to Corpus Christi this weekend to visit the Texas A&M University campus. On the way home, I found my notes and charts and decided to search for the Amish colony.
They do exist, but be's not like the pictures you see of Lancaster county. And there are no tourists.
Still, the grasslands, the windmills, and their rugged determination to make a living off the land are what inspire me to garden as simply as possible. The colony is still young (started 11 years ago), but there is one store and a growing number of  farmsteads.  There's also a demonstration farm, but we did not get to stop and see it this time.
The Amish do not like having their pictures taken, so I photographed only the buildings.

Water is life. This is the water system for one of the farmsteads. There are no large rivers or lakes in this part of the county.

A typical farmstead. Notice the windmill and the elevated water tank.
I love the prairies that are now so rare in much of Texas.

This looks like one of the newest buildings. It might be the school, but I'm not certain.
The Amish build all of their own buildings.

The combination store sells tack, buggies, and other Amish items.
                              I wanted to buy some bread, but it was too late in the day.
A buggy coming down the road.

This the only sign that gives you a hint.
The population of the colony as of 2010 is 75 Amish.
Thanks for visiting. That's it for this time.
David/ :-)
A simpler time


  1. Their way of life fascinates me too! How amazing that there is an Amish community there in Texas ... I would never guess that!

    The photos, particularly that shot showing the windmill and the elevated water tank, could have been shot here in Australia. They are very familiar sights on many of the properties out west.

    Isn't it amazing what our minds turn to when we're toiling in the garden!

  2. My mind wanders from subject to subject, too. My grandmother and great-grandmothers always wore bonnets while outside. I had forgotten there was an Amish community in Texas. Like you say, you hardly ever hear of it. Good photos of a 'simpler time'.

  3. I do the same thing. Right now I am cursing the pollen count at our place with our oaks and I think...oak trees are beautiful but messy...need a face mask when blowing leaves...who created the face mask? etc etc etc....:) The Amish are amazing. We have several communities in my home state of Wisconsin and they make the best wood furniture!! And let's not forget the pastries:) Sounds like a fun road trip....thanks for sharing your pics. school tomorrow:(

  4. Thank you so much for taking me to a byhone age, where life is slow and meaningful.
    The prarie is precious, these small pockets will be home to millions of creatures, most we will not be able to see.

    I love the thought of your Grandma wearing a bonnet, so charming.

    Enjoy your week and tku once again for visiting my blog.....bless you.

  5. I had no idea there was an Amish colony in Texas! Those prairies have a simpler beauty ... fitting for a simpler life.

  6. Hi David, I'm curious to know if the Amish ride horses or just have them pull a buggy and equipment. Let me know if you know a way to contact the community by post. Thanks. Von bazooki at yahoo dot com

  7. I've seen the Amish around in Corpus Christi and always wondered where they live.


I always appreciate your comments & questions! Happy Gardening from David/ Tropical Texana

Related Posts with Thumbnails