Posts Tagged ‘drought’

Grandfather’s Rose Sequel

My flowers that didn’t grow during the extreme heat and drought, the ones I watered, talked kindly too. The ones that survived the first earlier-than-normal cold snap and the return to normal temperatures. Well, they are frost bitten and now shrivaling. These include lantanas, salvias, a pineapple sage, and snap dragons.

During this Grandfather’s rose started dropping leaves. I watered it. It dropped more leaves. I worried and fretted all summer over this because Grandfather’s rose is a family heirloom. My great grandfather gave it my grandmother when my mother was born in 1929.

This is what the rose looks like now. It started growing leaves not to long ago and had a few flowers.

Obviously, the chill didn’t affect the flowers.

I also have a second-generation of grandfather’s rose. It grows on the north side of my garden area.

A garden spider, which I think is out late for them, has a web in it. Strong north winds from hurricaine Sandy practically destroyed the spider’s web. There’s so much of it missing that I couldn’t tell it was an orb-weaver’s web.

Very little web shows in this picture.

Those winds must have been a wild ride for the spider. I wondered if it stayed in the web, on a branch or on the ground during it all.

Obviously, the spider repaired the web somewhat overnight. The white mass is prey she has confined in silk.

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I Wonder …

I wonder if a spring and/or summer starts out dry and goes into a severe drought, if a plant might bloom but not use all of its buds at that time?

What else would explain a small group of flowers on this butterflyweed during first week of September? The plant bloomed in June, but didn’t produce any seedpods.

What would cause these seedpods to start growing when there had been no flowers blooming? Were the earlier flowers pollinated and ready to grow and develop, but the drought was to severe or heat to severe that the seeds wouldn’t have developed right?  (The pods started growing before the above flowers bloomed.)

So, does the plant or is the plant able to postpone in hopes of more conducive weather?

Hiking in the Rain

Playing in the rain isn’t reserved for only the young, especially when remnants of Isaac brings heavy rains to southern Illinois. Three and a half inches fell in a storm last night, a storm that spawned tornadoes southwest of here. Rain fell again this morning.

For weeks I’ve wanted to drive in the rain and see water in the creek at my rural property. A narrow band of rain approached from the northwest this afternoon. Buffy (my female chocolate lab) and I headed south. A light rain started just as I topped the hill toward my place, giving it a foggy appearance.

Obviously, I took this from inside the truck.

The rain let up a little when we pulled into camp. I hurried and got on my thin pocket raincoat. At least it kept my shoulder bag dry.

Reversed reflections in drops of water always fascinate me.

We topped the hill into the ravine, and there was water running in the creek! With our drought, water hasn’t flowed here since April or May. Our drought’s rated ” exceptional” which is a category worse than severe.

My childlike enthusiasm increased, especially since I didn’t have any witnesses.

I have to admit I kept thinking about the hurricane victims in the south … and the fire victims in the west.

I started noticing the rippling circles made from the rain drops.

The words sacred geometry came to mind, even though I know very little about it. Followed by:

Radiating circles of hope

for the victims of the hurricane, the drought and the fires.

Sumac Berries

I transplanted 2 sumac trees in the lower part of our yard several years ago. They were planted especially for feeding the birds in the winter.

The only reason I think they’re healthier looking than most plants is because it’s lower back there, and they’re down from the septic field. It didn’t look like the birds have started eating them yet.

Droopy leaves on this sumac show signs of stress from the extreme heat and drought. I also wonder about the overall tree drooping.

All the berries are gone on the wild cherry trees in the yard. Leaves on all the hackberry trees are yellowish and wilty looking. Their berries are a strange color and aren’t ripe yet. I wonder if they’ll even ripen.

A flock of cedar waxwings will move in an area in the winter and stay there until all the berries are gone. Robins and bluebirds eat berries in the winter too.

Around The Mailbox

I had quite a surprise when I went to put an envelope in the mailbox at 7 o’clock this morning. Flowers bloomed on Queen Anne’s lace, chicory and evening primrose. The chicory and evening primrose flowers are usually closed for the day when I make my afternoon trip to the mailbox.

Chicory commonly grows along the highways

Evening primrose flowers open late afternoon and close when the sun hits them in the morning.

Queen Anne’s lace blooms into October

Our heat’s averaging 95-99 degrees every day with high humidity. We have brown yards: only 11 1/2 inches of rain have fallen this year, and we’re now almost 14 inches behind in rainfall. Very few flowers bloom. Insects are scarce. Perennials are drying, and leaves curling on some trees.

The usual aspects of summer become less every day as the heat and drought continue. So, I take time and enjoy whatever I find.