Wednesday, February 5, 2014

When Beautiful is Bad

 My apologies right up front to all my blog friends who are laboring under the grip of the icy winter from hell. I do sympathize, really. But we here on the west coast have an entirely different problem


This is the view just outside my back door. Why would I grumble about gorgeous magnolia blossoms gracing the yard you might ask? Because these delicate, perfect flowers first began to open last week. That's LAST WEEK in the month of January, in the mountains, when this little tree should be festooned with ice crystals or at the very least the poor tree should be sound asleep awaiting the first rays of spring sunshine after a long, soggy winter. At this point it has rained a total of 2.5 inches here this winter and we've had one snowfall. It should have rained at least 22 inches by now just to qualify as an average year! See the difference there? 

California, indeed the Western United States, is in the grip of a severe drought and the drought is showing itself in some unexpected ways, some of them are beautiful. 


My plum tree is starting to bloom and we're expecting a hard freeze in the long term forecast. It is February after all. Warm days and freezing nights. That means there will be no fruit for us this year. That also means fruit production in California in general is in big trouble. California produces food for the nation and if we don't have water we can't grow food cheaply. Look for your food prices to go up in the near future. Gloomy I know. That's why in this particular case beautiful is bad.


This tree should still be fast asleep not trying it's hardest to make plums. 
 
Until next time,

18 comments:

  1. My apricot is budding, too, and I've noticed other trees around that are blossoming already. I'm definitely still praying for rain!

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    1. By now I hope the entire state is praying for rain! Three years of drought is a long time and I fear we are only at the beginning of a cycle.

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  2. It seems this crazy weather is reaching far and wide.

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    1. I think this might be our new normal and we should all be prepared for it for the future.

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  3. Very strange weather for our entire country. The blooms are beautiful...just the wrong time of the year for them.

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    1. It's funny but ordinarily I so look forward to this tree blooming as a sign that spring is truly here but this year it just made me feel sad because I know it's just not right.

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  4. Oh no. Everything is so off with this Polar Vortex and all the weird weather patterns. I'm so sorry the trees are blooming already and will most likely be hurt by the hard frost. :( You're right, though, food prices this year are going to go up, up, up.

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    1. I'm trying to think of what I can do now to prepare for the rising prices later. Any ideas?

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  5. Our navel oranges are blooming TWO months early!!!! It's bad everywhere!!
    xo Kris

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    1. If this is the new normal we're all going to have to adjust our way of doing things I just hope that the plants and animals can keep up! Do you sell your fruit? If so this is of real concern to you I know.

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  6. The blooms are lovely, but I know it's much too early for them. The weather is definitely strange lately. The drought could cause many serious problems. I pray that the drought ends soon.

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    1. The water reservoirs here are just 17% of normal which means that they soon will be dry and many towns are already going dry. Worst case we have an irrigation well on our property but in time that too could run dry what a scary thought. So many have too much weather and we don't have enough, sigh.

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  7. Oh Pat, I hear you! My mums are coming up already...not good! We need rain and hopefully tonight we get a good drenching!

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    1. Up here last night's "rain" was a fizzle. How about down there? It would have to rain all day, every day for the next three months to make a dent don't you agree?

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  8. I am visiting you today, courtesy of Vicki's Grow Your Blog party. Your blog is lovely and I great fun spending a few minutes reading some of your posts. I will be posting your Vanilla extract instructions to Pinterest and am signing up to follow you with Google Friend Connect! I hope you can find time to drop in at my blog Mimi Mine. Have a blessed and beautiful weekend on the West Coast!

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    1. As I write this reply we have our first rain in MONTHS such a blessing. Thank you for following and I for sure will stop by your blog this week. Isn't this blog party fun and interesting?

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  9. I'm living for spring blooms- this has been the worst winter ever! If I see that ground hog I'm going to murder him!
    Vicki

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    1. I can certainly understand what you mean and I wish we could send each other a little of our weather a weather exchange if you please. As I write it is finally raining here for the first time in 9 months. It would have to rain 40 days and 40 nights to do any real good and then I will be complaining. I hope you get some relief soon from the cold.

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