a quiet day

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here to tell you about our quiet day today. You may remember me from such posts as “The New Thing”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.
You can see that the native grasses are turning green. They don’t need much water to start growing.
Most of the other green stuff is bulb foliage.

Water has become quite a concern here. We did have a little bit of rain a week or so ago, but mostly it’s been really, really windy, with high fire danger warnings almost every day. There’s no rain at all in the forecast. The guy I live with says he’s never seen a spring this dry or windy. He said experts are predicting a hotter than normal summer, and so I guess we’re going to have more fire warnings, unless the wind stops.

The wind has had an effect on the snowpack in the mountains, which in some ways doesn’t affect us since the garden isn’t watered much (except for the shade garden), but in other ways it does, of course, and overall, it’s not good.
The dust blown by the winds, which blew sixty to eighty miles an hour just yesterday in southern Colorado, have covered the snowpack with dust, and that’s lowered what scientists call its albedo, or ability to reflect sunlight, meaning the snow will melt faster than usual.
The snowpack for the Rio Grande watershed, in southern Colorado, is almost completely gone. That water goes to places like New Mexico. I’ve never been there.
(You can see that I’m learning stuff, but I’d rather learn happier stuff, like the stuff near the end of my post.)

But today was a nice, quiet day, without constant wind. I guess tomorrow will feature more wind, though, and critical fire danger.
There were bumblebees on Amsonia jonesii today. This will flower regardless of whether or not it rains.
The flowers are bluer than the pictures suggest.

There are a few other dryland amsonias which are being raised from seeds here. The guy I live with said it’s fairly annoying that while Amsonia jonesii seeds need a cold treatment to germinate, some of the others don’t, and yet they’re much harder to get established in the garden. (He tried sowing some seeds directly into the ground, but that didn’t work.)

In other news, less filled with agitation and worry, we saw a muskrat.
This is the muskrat’s happy home. We know because we saw it swim into the grassy bank there.
It’s not the same muskrat as before, but you can be sure I’ll be looking for it on my walks.

Until next time, then.

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18 Responses to a quiet day

  1. tonytomeo says:

    A muskrat is something happy to learn about? Was the muskrat happy?

  2. Paddy Tobin says:

    I am constantly amazed, and not in a good way, by your accounts of your climate. We complain forever about our weather here in Irelan but it is generally about rain.One old saying about our weather goes, “When you can’t see the hill, it’s raining. When you can see it, it’s going to rain.”

    • paridevita says:

      The guy I live with says the climate here has changed, pretty dramatically, from what it was last century.
      March, April, May, and June used to be rainy, or even snowy months (except no snow in June), like they were last year, and in most preceding years.
      Once or twice a year, between March and October, there would be a period of rain, mist, and drizzle lasting for a week to ten days. That stopped in 1995.
      Then we would get thunderstorms, sometimes downpours, and sometimes with hail, which could start in May and last until October.
      Snow could fall any time from September to May, but it would melt in a day in the warmer months, and last for a few days in the colder months. No snow lying on the ground for months on end the way the last few winters have been. (The interest in snowdrops began a quarter century ago when winters featured long warm periods between snowfalls.)
      Last year we received 11 millimeters of rain from August 1st until December 31st, the day after the terrible fire up north (which was driven by 100 mph winds).
      This year, snow on the ground for three straight months, few warm days, and then April arrived, with no rain, and high winds almost every day.
      The wind is driving everyone crazy, around here.

      • Paddy Tobin says:

        I can well imagin going crazy in those conditons.

      • paridevita says:

        The guy I live with says it’s “supposed to be spring” here.
        It’s 82 degrees F, with nine percent humidity, and wind. I mean we think this is nice weather (minus the wind), when it’s summer, but not when it’s May.

  3. Mark E. Mazer says:

    ” I guess tomorrow will feature more wind, though, and critical fire danger.” We found these maps informative on the fire dangers in Colorado’s wildland/urban interfaces. https://static.colostate.edu/client-files/csfs/pdfs/Current_projected_WUI.pdf

  4. What a cute Bumble Bee you have there Mani an Guy!!! Now if you had more rain…sighss……wee hope sum how it WILL rain there! Wind can be soo cray-cray can’t it Mani??? Sumtimess it scaress mee!
    Your flowerss an greenery look lovelee….Spring furinalle found all of us.
    An you have a mew Muskrat frend? Sumone (not mee) thott this song iss a kewl song an wanted to send it to both of youss’!!!

    Mew mew mew wee hope you like THE song!!!
    **nose bopss** BellaDahrma an ❤ BellaSita Mum

  5. Elaine says:

    Beautiful amsonia. It has been a weird spring almost everywhere. Some places so cold and wet others too warm and very dry. The shape of things to come. However, we do have to stop and look at the beauty around us. Of course, this means you too Mani in your various characteristic poses. Don’t pester the muskrat when you are out and about.

    • paridevita says:

      It’s been pretty nice here for the last couple of days, with no wind. Maybe it will rain a little next week.
      The dry spring here isn’t so bad if the wind isn’t blowing; the guy I live with likes dry weather. With some rain now and then.

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