Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Winter storm sweeps in

Where is Cheyenne? They are getting dumped on... Had a bazillion accidents and finally gave up and closed the interstates. >Slow moving winter storm dumps on the west. ABQ is staying warm enough for it not to be a problem. Probably Santa Fe is dicier.

http://www.victoryseeds.com/frost/nm.html
This site lists Sept 26th as a common 1st frost date for Albuquerque, NM.
5/25 for last frost in the spring.
Taken from: "Climatography of the U.S. No. 20, Supplement No. 1", 1988, National Climatic Data Center, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.

If these dates are still roughly accurate, then I guess I can't complain about last week's killing frosts.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Yard and Garden update

Rain - To remind myself, it rained hard (Oct 7th) Then again last week--the 20th and 21st. (Where to find stats re annual rainfall? Local temperature history? First day of frost.) Filled up the new rain barrel, then we didn't think to drain it so we were not able to collect any of the gold that came pouring down 2 weeks later.

Fall Garden - the peas are darling. The rest of the crops are trucking along too. (photos?) In general though, I've had a hard time getting motivated to take pictures. Plants dying back, shrinking, turning brown. On one hand, I'm tired and welcome a winter rest (to maybe putz and nest indoors). On the other, it's painful to part. The leaves are either gold or gone on the red bud. The wysteria has shed most of its leaves. The sunflowers and sunchokes are gangly brown skeletons.

Straw and Firewood - we got 2 loads (10 bales) of straw and some more frost cloth. And half a cord of seasoned mixed hardwood. (Hal made a fire while we were gone because the heater isn't on yet and it was 64-degrees in the house.) So that was the first fire at our address this fall; G built one Saturday morning. Very nice.

Dark in the mornings - Until it's time to drive to work, at which point the sun turns all its fury on anyone driving east. That dangerous time of year. Several clear days where the new moon is a wisp against unbroken blue. The sky so far away. The cottonwoods along the ditch are roughly at their peak: huge shirring masses of
goldenrod and yellow. A have either heard or spotted a few cranes and Canadian geese overhead. Hummers are gone. Birds on the move. Wonder if the hawks are going over too?

Goal - giving Aldo Leopold another chance.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Hard Frost - Sept 30th & Garlic in!

Note: Last week we had a cold snap. G and I were not paying very close attention. It was cold enough either Tuesday or Wednesday night to kill everything but the chard and the leeks in the garden, burned the sweet potato vines and green pole beans badly. Duh. Tomatoes in the raised bed and along the front west wall seem to have been sheltered a bit more. They made it through okay. Gloria talked to some other ABQ folks via the internet--north valley was the only place it really hit. Everyone else in town was spared. Just takes a few degrees either way, right?

Note: Soft-necked garlic cloves came the end of last week, so we planted those in the fall garden bed Sunday afternoon. Then put in the rest of the daffodil bulbs. Had to replant half a dozen along the west side because a critter (Ruby?) dug them up. We unrolled some chicken wire over them this time. G also put in a second planting of Wando peas, and we laced up some string for them to climb on. It looks very official! As always, 'There's a lot of hope out there....'