Rod Croskery’s been obsessed with black walnuts ever since he couldn’t convince anyone that he had found them growing on Young’s Hill, Leeds County, Ontario, Canada, back in 1973. “Walnuts don’t grow that far north. They must be butternuts,” said all of the experts consulted, including the veneer company representatives.

Considerable research proved Rod to be correct this once, so he decided that these walnuts would be his retirement project. Then the Leeds Stewardship Council suggested that he plant some trees as a demonstration plot for the International Plowing Match 2007 Conservation Display, and it seemed the perfect time to begin a walnut orchard on the fields adjoining the Croskery Woodlot.

By fall of 2007 the excitement of the IPM had died down and the Walnut Diary entries began to diverge. Howie Crichton came across the blog and offered Rod a column in his weekly newspaper, the Review-Mirror. It ran for four years.

In response to what he felt was a need, Rod has maintained a Newboro-Lake-Ice-Report page in the blog. It culminates each year with a guess-the-ice-out-date contest, the winner of which is entitled to bragging rights on the lake until next season’s winner is crowned.

During the summer of 2016 Rod belatedly settled upon his midlife-crisis car.  The little-red-Miata dream gradually  morphed into an early Porsche Cayenne S, a 5380 pound SUV which his son Charlie found for him in Vancouver and shipped home by rail to take up residence in the well equipped auto shop at the farm.  The family named the truck “Ruby” and its repairs have figured prominently in 2016 entries.

The blog went quiet for a couple of months in fall when a prolonged session under the dash fixing Ruby’s air conditioning pinched a couple of nerves in Rod’s neck, nixing the ability of his left arm to type.

The arrival in September of Ada Grace Croskery has given new focus to the family circle, and “the Ada Virus” has increasingly monopolized Internet bandwidth as virtually every photo or video is repeated in real time among the competing grandparents and relatives.

Rod’s considerable restraint in keeping this blog free of the Ada Virus had to crack at some point.


July 30, 2017

Rod and Bet await the call from Kingston General Hospital for Rod to go in for a valve replacement and triple bypass surgery.  Rod spins this slightly risky reset as a solid investment insofar as it offers an additional couple of decades of pension income to the family financial plan.

February 23, 2019

Rod has started the renovation of the brick wing of their home in Forfar.  A contractor put on a new roof last summer;  another contractor built a massive septic system for the two wings of the house, so there was no reason not to go ahead with a renovation.  First up is the re-wiring.  This involves a lot of bending and work on the floor, but so far the renovated heart is holding up much better than the aging joints and muscles.


“This is a subject of but small importance and I know not whether it will interest any readers, but it has interested me.”

Charles Darwin on Earthworms, 1882


“Do not tell fish stories where the people know you; but particularly, don’t tell them where they know the fish.”
– More Maxims of Mark (Twain), Johnson, 1927

On Porsche websites contributors refer to the ownership of a Porsche Cayenne without warranty as “going naked” and buying a 2004 Cayenne as “cliff diving.”  So far Rod has found the experience entertaining.


Things get interesting when “social license” and “consent” turn up in the same sentence.  I guess neither word indicates satisfaction but both offer enough wiggle room for a lawyer to get the user out of trouble.


You may contact Rod by email at: rodcros at

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