Sunday, September 2, 2012

Grateful for Issac

Today is our second day of rain. I'm sorry our relief had to come at such a high price for the people of the Gulf States.

We so desperately needed this long rain. Last night there were tornado warnings all down the length of the state which then progressed eastward into Illinois and Kentucky. There were some reports of  damage, I'm sorry for those families too.

How strange it is, this ambivalence. The rain that is our blessing has been a curse for others.

This rain is a godsend for us as now we'll be able to put in a fall garden. When it lets up I'll go out and put a shovel to the ground just to see how far down the water percolated. My fruit trees look happier already.

The animals handle rain in very different ways. Goats hate it. Just a few drops will send them scurrying into their shelter. They don't even like wet soil so after the rain stops they come out just long enough to check for tasty pecan leaves that might have fallen and then they head back to their dry shelter.

Chickens have a complex social order and are positively OCD when it comes to where they sleep. The pullets refuse to sleep in the hen house with the old ladies. Instead they roost on top of the wood pile. Even when rain is coming down in buckets they won't stay in the coop with the geezers. They sit hunched on the wood pile, making pitiful squeaking noises. They can look absolutely drenched but the down feathers next to their skin remain dry.

Turkeys are the least civilized of critters. They're kind of like the cave men of the poultry world. It can be raining cats and dogs with thunder and lightning and the turkeys are walking around the yard, calmly getting a drink from the waterers. They'll sit on the ground or roost on top of the coop but they have no interest in getting out of the rain. I have purposely let some mulberry trees grow up next to the oak tree so there is a place in the yard that is always sheltered and dry. Do the turkeys go there? Nope. They'd rather sit in the rain.

It's important to remember that, no matter how excited I may be about a good rain, I have to stay out of the garden until the soil and the leaves have a chance to dry. We humans are the primary means of transmission for many plant diseases. Viruses, bacteria, and fungi spores stick to our hands and our clothes. So many fungal spores need a fine layer of water to germinate so now is the time to hang out in the house with the kid and the pets. I hope your Sunday is as enjoyable as mine is so far.

Thanks Isaac.

1 comment:

  1. We're experiencing a bit of El Nino down under, hasn't rained in ages, even when it does, it's just a sprinkle. Not good for the garden!