Wishing for Rain

| 5/25/2018 9:06:00 AM

the garden all prepped

Rain.  Incredibly simple, everyday, in oversupply last year.  But not this year, not yet.  Rain?  When is the last time you remember having a rainy day this spring? 

That’s because we haven’t.  The last major precipitation was in snow!  How long ago?  Fortunately last month, but that means even the snow melt has drained from the farm’s sandy soil.  The creek is low and sluggish.  Even the frogs and toads won’t come out to play on the gravel road in the evening.  They dare not stray from the moist safety of the swamplands.

Dry.  Scary dry.  And it’s fire season in Wisconsin.  My worst nightmares include out-of-control fires on the farm.  Too many animals, not enough trailers, chaos everywhere, the darkness of night.  On weeks like these, we think about anything that could make a spark, taking the extra precaution.

I notice the cheerily sunny sky dim a bit and jump to look up the radar.  Maybe?  Could it be rain coming?  No, it’s just the last parcels of our moisture evaporating, hauling off to make rain for someone else.  Watching the gray underbellies float by, I wish I had a cloud lasso I could throw up there and haul them back, parking them over the farm until I had wrung them out.

Part of what has me unnerved about the dry spell is previous experiences with droughts in the Northwoods.  A couple of seasons into our time farming on the homestead, they began to set in.  First the rains would stop in July, the next year they stopped in June, the year after that in May.  The dry spells eventually started in April and March, and the longer it was dry and hot, the harder it was for the rain to break through.

6/8/2018 9:47:57 AM

Same problem here in Alberta. Went straight from a late winter to summer. The soil is very dry now; because it got hot so quickly, a lot of the snow literally sublimated into the atmosphere instead of slowly melting and sinking into the soil.

5/30/2018 11:30:54 AM

Mainland Europe is having the same problem this year. Jumping from winter straight into summer with no rain. On the other hand, here in UK it rains as always, that is something we can count on. It can happen though that rain doesn't come for 3 weeks and then we get worried, as we watch the deep cracks in the clay soil to appear.

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