Saturday, 3 July 2010

Rain wanted!

The first six months of this year have been the driest 'first six months' of any year since about 1970 and don't I know it!

One of my ancestors - a great grandfather or 2 x great uncle or some such - was a market gardener back in the days of Queen Victoria. He would not have had the benefit of modern inventions to produce his own micro-climates and would, like me, have been at the mercy of the vagaries of the weather. The difference is that he grew vegetables as a way of making his living whereas for me it is more of a hobby. The fact that my parsnip seeds failed to germinate this year is an irritation, not a disaster. No, wait a minute. The seeds have not completely failed to germinate. Two did. My garlic seemed to be coming along very nicely, but all of a sudden the plants have collapsed and now I have just three which might, just might, come to something. At least the runner beans and the first sowing of peas look as though they will produce a crop.

I have picked most of the blackcurrants this week, leaving a little under a quarter of the crop to finish ripening. We have just the one bush, but it produces enough fruit to last us through the year. I also picked three raspberries yesterday. Since they are supposed to be an autumn fruiting variety, coming on stream in September, that is a little early. Mind you, I gave some roots to my friend Tony two or three years back and he has already eaten two bowls of raspberries and cream for dessert!

Mrs BP and I went strawberry picking yesterday morning at a farm a few miles north. The fruit was so plentiful that in just 15 or 20 minutes we had moved only about 5 yards and picked three or four pounds - enough for Mrs to make this year's jam (we don't eat much of it) and leave enough fruit over for dessert on three days or so.

But I still want rain - a couple of days of steady, gentle rainfall - to liven things up. The water butt is bone dry, something I have never known at this time of the year, and I am putting on the hose (on the veg only) every couple of evenings. Can anybody give me the steps of the rain dance?


#1Nana said...

Your rain has come here to, usually dry, eastern Oregon. We have had record breaking rain...and everything is still green. We're usually quite brown by this time of the summer.

I am heading south to San Diego, California this morning and I hope to find some hot, dry weather to celebrate Independence Day.

Brighton Pensioner said...

Go safely, Nana.

Uncle Skip, said...

It's a long drive, so she must be flying?

It is interesting that here in my neck of the woods, we finally had a year of seemingly normal rainfall after three dry years. Now your normally damp climate has dried up.

Brighton Pensioner said...

It seems hardly possible that only a few months ago I was refusing to walk Fern in the woods because of the mud!