Saturday, September 10, 2011

Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch ...

Since I returned from my trip to Indianapolis for this year's Garden Writers' symposium, I'm finding it hard to get back into blogging mode. For once, I can't blame it on the heat ... my first morning home, something had changed and I could feel that first faint hint of fall weather to come.  Even the quality of the sunlight was different.  We've had over a week of coolish nights and pleasantly warm mornings, and that weather has made being outside a pleasure again.  The Head Gardener and I are less than happy that the forecast calls for our temperatures to return to triple digits by Monday and continue throughout the week. 


This picture was taken in Indianapolis, where's it also been warmer and drier than usual.
Although my family tells me it did rain the day I left for Indy,  we haven't had rain since I returned, so I'm still spending way too much time of my time outside dragging hoses around.   Even more depressingly, it seems that I will be doing it for many months to come.  La Nina, the periodic cooling of the Pacific Ocean, is back and forecast to gradually strengthen and continue into winter.   What this means for Texas isn't good and it's a wonder I didn't weep hysterically when I read this quote from Texas climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon in SciGuy Eric Berger's blog: "Four years out of five, Texas has a dry November through March when La NiƱa is in place. We need above normal rainfall to break this drought, and we’re probably not going to get it. This is looking more and more like a multi-year drought. Anyplace that doesn’t get lucky with tropical moisture in the next couple of months is probably going to be in bad shape for a long time."  
No amount of hand watering can make up for such sustained lack of rain.  While some of my fellow garden bloggers tell me that a drip irrigation system will help in the back gardens, I still have some doubts, due to what we'll call my rather haphazard method of garden design.  That said, I recently saw pictures of the garden I planted this spring at my friends' cabin in Somerville and the plants are thriving despite only being watered once a week by the drip system they installed.  The Head Gardener and I are cogitating over ways to get our pal Jeff over here to survey the gardens and tell us how he thinks a drip system should be set up.


At least one thing doesn't need water to stay green.  My sister, the estimable Dr. Laura, asked me this week why I hadn't posted pictures of Wit's End since we had it painted.  Thanks for the reminder, baby sister ... your wish is my command.

12 comments:

Rebecca said...

THE Dr. Laura????

I am so sad to hear of the severe drought y'all are experiencing. Those triple digit temps don't sound good either!

Still praying for an intervention. The sooner, the better!

Carol said...

The house at Wit's End is such a pretty soft shade of green. I hope soon your garden will get rain and return to that color, too.

Of course, I noticed that the car you took a picture of was in Indianapolis. We need rain, too!

Carol said...

I wouldn't make it without the drip system hubbie puts together for me! He ordered everything on line from Berry irrigation. Very easy and not that expensive. Have everything on timers so we can travel without worry. Carol

LindaCTG said...

Love that paint color! But sigh: I was making a list of plants but guess it's just going to have to wait. Even the sedges are drying up here. Rats and rats.

Cindy, MCOK said...

Rebecca, she's THE Dr. Laura to me but no, not Laura Schlessinger.

Carol, I know you do. You're likely to get it sooner than we are, from the sounds of it.

Carol the 2nd, I'll look at Berry's site, thanks!

Linda, every time I think about making a list of plants to add this fall, I have to wonder if it's worth it.

Gail said...

Cindy, I am so sorry that the drought continues and I can sympathize that watering is a big drag. The house looks lovely in its new green. gail

Fairegarden said...

That is a lovely shade, Cindy. I don't know how you manage without irrigation of some kind and hope that help is on the way, since rain may not be.

Frances

Carol said...

One thing about the drippers Cindy is you do have a feeling of freedom, and security if you can't get to ~~ specially as dry as it's been this year. Tho, when I have the time, I do find watering relaxing, but someone has to go make flower money so I don't always have the time! Carol

Rose said...

Your house looks lovely, Cindy! I've been watching The Weather Channel off and on and hearing about the record drought you're suffering as well as the terrible brushfires--I hope those are nowhere near you. I do hope the climatologists are wrong, but an irrigation system certainly sounds like the way to go.

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

I've got my fingers crossed for a hurricane or tropical storm to drop some rain on Wit's End. It's a great color now.

Lancashire rose said...

How right you are about hand watering being unable to take the place of rain. I have a drip system which is just not adequate. The little emitters on the line always seem to clog up with lime. I just haven't found anything that works well. Let me know if you get some good advice. The mornings in the garden have been nice but like you I see those 100s again for this next week. I could stand that if we could just get some rain. How is the Euphorbia doing that you bought in Seattle. Mine is just hanging in. Maybe not meant for this climate. And please think of me when you are dividing your Montbretias.

Patrick's Garden said...

So sorry for what you're going through but I'm impressed you haven't thrown in the towel.
And that's awful news about you're long term predictions. I hope you can find solace in the words of the garden writer Thomas Cooper:"The garden is never so good as it will next year." Keep the faith.