Monday, July 16, 2012

Copperopolis Summer: Dry, Dry, Dry

The gardens at Ludwigslust in Upper Germany where rain actually falls in the summer
Ahh, Ludwigslust...

It was inevitable that when I visited countries where it regularly rains all summer long that when I came home I should make comparisons.

More Ludwigslust

Coming off a very dry winter, with slightly more than half our expected rainfall, and no rain at all since May, things are looking severely baked around here. It didn't help that while I was gone Copperopolis was struck with a heatwave with temperatures up to 108 degrees. 

Not Ludwigslust (that's a thirsty Frogpond deer in the upper center

When I left, the corn looked like this...
...and, when I came home, it looked like this

Buckeye falling asleep in the heat

The sorry state of the garden wasn't Bruce's fault: he watered early in the morning before leaving for work and dashed home again in the evening to do it all over again. It just couldn't be enough.

Some plants, like the California buckeye to the right, have adjusted to our rainless summers by estivating -- when the weather gets hot, they just go dormant until the following spring. 

 It's a clever technique, but, sadly, they still look like hell. They may as well be my poor, fried hollyhocks.

Hollyhocks definitely past their prime

Of course, some plants thrive in all this sunshine

The worst part of all of this is that since we had such a dry winter, the water table is very low.  If I leave the hose running for too long (meaning about one and a half hours), the entire well runs temporarily dry.  Then the pump shuts down until the well has had time to recharge.  This is taking several hours now.  I've drawn down the well down like this three times just since I've gotten home. 
This is not a good sign of things to come.
It's going to be a long summer, I'm afraid.  Whining doesn't help -- I'll just keep doing my best to keep everything alive until fall arrives.


  1. Though I have been following your holiday photos,I have not posted any comments,until now, as I have been very busy,not had much time for the computer lately.
    I am glad you had a wonderful time and your photos of the Castles and your family are lovely.
    I have to say your Niece is so like you and such a pretty girl.

    Your garden does look rather sorry for it's self compared to the green of Germany,hope you get some rain soon.

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  3. So good to hear from you, Carolyn! As one who lives in a solid old home, I'm sure that you understand my appreciation of the types of buildings that stand the test of time. And I so love the rain. California has many beauties, but it's lack of summer rain is quite a drawback. Not to complain! It doesn't help that every year without fail I plant all sorts of things that need watering on a regular basis.

    Thank you for the compliments on my family -- it was wonderful seeing them after such a long time.

    I do hope that all is well with you. I don't suppose that the comments section on a blog are the proper place to ask, but I can't help but wonder why are you so busy??? I know -- I'm a Nosy Nellie!