Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Ahhh, It Rained!

 
Last week I wrote a post about our desperate need for rain and this past weekend we had some wonderful relief in the form of 13 inches of blessed rain. While the rest of the country shivered in the Polar Vortex here in the Sierra Foothills we were dancing/rejoicing in the first real winter we've felt so far this season. I got to wear my new rain boots for the first time! Aren't they the bee's knees? They're fleece lined too. Flowery and girly they make me super happy splashing around in the muddy chicken yard.


We've been waiting since the beginning of fall for the damp to come on so that we could complete a major farm chore - the burning of the brush we've cleared all spring and summer. This stuff is piled up all over just waiting for the rainy weather to make it safe to start a fire and that just has not happened. See those little arrows? They mark the beginning and end of just ONE brush pile, the one closest to the house. It make not look like much from this vantage point but it includes at least a hundred small trees and untold branches as bigger than my arm. There were four piles like this on the property that needed to be taken care of. Those of you who don't live in the country may not realize that there's a law in California requiring property owners to keep the land cleared at least 100 feet around your house for fire safety which means taking out the understory of forest property. Fire is the number one safety threat especially since we are in our third year of severe drought so Chris and I take brush clearing very seriously.


The minute the rain stopped we were out the door and had burn piles blazing. We had four fires like this going non-stop for three days. It's dirty, exhausting work and super satisfying. This is the ONLY kind of fire you ever want to see in the forest - a controlled burn!

Until next time,

20 comments:

  1. Hurray for rain. . . and may there be more to come!

    Your boots are definitely cute--I'd be tempted to go puddle-splashing in them.

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    1. I could not resist those flowery boots when I saw them at Costco for $20! Such a deal and they make me so happy. It's the simple things in life I tell ya.

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  2. I like your rain/mud Boots! ---we are not allowed to burn brush :o( We have plenty of it. We dump it down a ravine on our property that has become this huge recyle/mulch/compost ditch. The Quail love it!

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    1. I love the idea of providing habitat for the quail and I understand the burn restrictions but I'm grateful we can burn this stuff because there's so much of it and we truly have no safe place to put it.

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  3. Love your boots!!! They do help add a hop to your step!!! :)!

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    1. These girly, flowery boots are a BIG improvement over my previous mud stompers I can tell you especially the fleece lining. But oh the prettiness is just too, too much!

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    1. Glorious rain, we pray for more. It needs to rain more. There's a sheen of green on the hillsides the ranchers are so happy.

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  5. Great boots. We finally got some rain here, but not enough.

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    1. You're right Michelle not enough this is just a start. We have so much catching up to do but I can almost hear the earth sighing with relief if only for a moment and I'm so grateful for a respite from the DUST!

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  6. We are waiting as well for a damp clear day with no wind. Grin.....country living. Is that tree with the brown leaves a Black Jack......we have tons of Black Jack trees.....most are hollow.

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    1. That tree is a small Black Oak ubiquitous in this forest. We have two that are at least 75 ft tall which means they are very, very old. Our forest is a mix of pine, oak, cedar and madrone.

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  7. Love your boots Patrica. Very stylish footwear for farm work :)

    So happy you got the rain you needed, 13 inches is a lot! It's great you were able to burn off the brush you cleared last year. Hope you can get a little rest now.

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    1. 13" seems like a lot but it would have to rain like that for the next three months in order to bring our water count up to normal just for this year. Here in Northern Calif. we have 6 months of dry followed by 6 months of wet in a normal year and we have not had a normal year in 3 years. so that's why we are now in a severe drought. The north supplies the water for the entire state even though the population is mostly in the south. People don't want to live where it rains for 6 months out of the year I guess ;0

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  8. Love your Wellies! We do burns for our tree waste too. I love it!
    xo Kris

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    1. Burn days are hard work but I love it too. Super satisfying especially in the snow which we have had none of recently - crazy weather.

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  9. Good Morning Patrica, Never mind "Those boots are made for walking" your boots, or as we call them Wellingtons, "were certainly made for splashing about in the puddles". They are fabulous..... a girl needs a little bit of colour to make her smile.
    Gosh, that sounds like a lot of work. Once the rains have fallen, it must make the air feel so fresh. I remember when we lived on the Island of Cyprus, we would have blistering heat in the summer, but when the rains fell in November/December, the trees and flowers were cleaned of dust and everything looked like new. We weren't allowed to water the plants during the summer, because we lived on an island and there was a water shortage, so when the rains came, everything started growing again.
    The weekend is almost here, so have fun.
    Best Wishes
    Daphne

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    1. Daphne, I swear I could hear the earth sigh with relief. I was so tired of the dust. The climate here in the mountains is pretty much 6 months of dry followed by 6 months of wet in a normal year. It's been 9 months since we've had a significant (meaning more than a drizzle) rain. Talk about wilted and sad. I can tell you the forest looks and smells so much fresher.I hope my well was somewhat replenished too. I have friends who have been forced to dig a new well because theirs has gone dry and that's a HUGE expense. This is our 4th year of drought this year being the most extreme.

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  10. We have been battered by gale force winds here in North Wales with lots of trees down and branch debris everywhere.As for rain, it just keeps coming and coming with no end in sight.We get the occasional fine and sunny day but then it is back to rain.LOVE your boots or wellingtons we would call them.

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    1. Oh my, the weather is crazy every where it seems. I'm going to start calling my girly boots 'wellies' it's so much friendlier and lord knows I wear them ALL THE TIME while I muck about. Thanks for visiting Dogwood Lane.

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Thanks for your comments. I love hearing what you have to say.