White Valentine’s

It snowed last night! The snow began melting at 4AM and by the time the sun and I were up at 8AM, it was almost gone. We scooped enough off the cars to have a snowball fight before going to Central Market.

It looks like Dallas got quite a bit more snow than we did in Austin.

I’ve never had a white Christmas, but now I’ve had a white Valentine’s Day.

The Heat Is On

Well, it’s that time of year again: day after day of triple-digit highs. Yesterday it reached 108 degrees at Camp Mabry. That broke the 50-year record for the day. Yesterday was the hottest day this year–until today, that is.

Today, at 2:12PM, the temperature reached 110 degrees at Camp Mabry. That’s a record high for August, and it tied with for second-hottest day ever recorded in Austin, 110 degrees on September 4, 2000. Austin’s all time high was 112 on September 5, 2000.

A freakish thunderstorm brought 2 minutes of rain to my garden, but at least the rain is supposed to break the streak of triple-digit highs.

So what do I do in the garden this time of year? I hole up inside, making plans for the fall garden, updating this garden website, and reading garden books and catalogs for consolation and inspiration–same as northern gardeners do when their snowed in for the winter.

I do a bit of hand-watering each day between 7AM and 9AM, weeding and straightening up as I go. I have to aerate the mulch as I go or it forms a hard crust that doesn’t let the water soak in under it. But the yard definitely has a weedy, seedy, neglected look which defies you to find a garden in it.

Sunny Day Blues

Well, the promise of rain went unfufilled, despite dark low clouds, and thunderous rumblings in the sky these last two days. Today the clouds cleared off and it got hot and then hotter. Austin broke the previous high temperature of 92 degrees with a 96 degree high. All the flowers that looked so spring like yesterday withered from the shock. Even the sun-loving tomato plants were caught off guard. No rain in the forecast for two more weeks at least.

Wow! Rain!

In Austin, it’s just not a Memorial Day weekend without some severe weather. Having been cheated out of the last two predicted chances for rain, I didn’t even look at the forecast. Then at 1:11 AM, I was awakened by pouring rain and thunder. It rained for a good twenty minutes, resulting in more than an inch of rain. I got up, just to go outside and smell it.

This morning, the rain barrel is full and the entire yard looks fresh again. The rain sifts through the sand of the new paths and makes them even and clean. All the mulch I spread yesterday is also evenly sifted over the beds. The smell of the damp earth is intoxicating. Best of all, there is a chance for more rain this afternoon.