Monday, December 3, 2012

Rain Delay

My front yard project has been in a rain delay for the past five days.  In that time we’ve received almost a full five inches of rain.  About a half inch of that came in a single stop-what-you’re doing-and-take-notice 10-minute period Sunday morning.  We stood at the windows and watched the water on the street crest the sidewalk.  If the local news hadn’t brought in all four of their meteorologists that morning and talked at length about this thin yellow band on the Doppler radar I would have been concerned about real flooding.  But I trusted that Mark, Eileen, Tamara and Dirk all knew what they were talking about and that the “extreme weather” wouldn’t stay long. 

The storm has knocked down most of the leaves.

By Sunday afternoon the clouds had finally cleared.  When I stood outside and looked east, I could still see the dark grey clouds and knew they were dumping snow on Lake Tahoe a hundred miles away.   

Berries on an Arbutus 'Marina' - also known as a Strawberry Tree

The sky was still clear this morning so the landscaping crew was finally back at work.  Today’s goal is to dig the trenches for the new sprinkler system.  They are running into some pretty hefty roots leftover though so work is progressing much slower than I’m sure they hoped. 

A red leaf cradled by Lambs Ear

Normally they would also plan to lay the sod today but the landscaper called his supplier and was told that right now the sod is under about 2 inches of water.  If it dries up early in the day they might be able to lay it down but it’ll likely be “heavy as hell” so the sod might have to wait a few more days as more rain is forecast for Tuesday and Wednesday.

Acer palmatum 'Glowing Embers'

It’s a little crazy to me when I think about this being December and yard projects of this type are still being done.  But this is California and, in spite of the storm (or perhaps because of it) overnight temperatures have been in the mid-to upper 40s with daytime highs over 60.  So, why not?  After all, it still looks and feels like autumn.

Lagerstroemia x fauriei 'Natchez' (A white-blooming Crepe Myrtle)


  1. Can I just be honest and say I'm a wee bit jealous? November brought not a drop of rain ... the first dry November on record for 115 years. Your trees look much like mine right now with lots of beautiful fall color. Glad you're getting to move forward with your landscape plans; they sound exciting.

  2. I tell you, nature is something. The rain may be excessive, but the beauty is undaunted. Or, yes, maybe encouraged. The color on your maple leaves, including those on the ground, is just delightful. Cheers.