The Rain Gauge

We closed out 2015 having emptied the rain gauge of 68.5 inches, a 26 year record at our little spot on the planet. That is a monthly average of 5.7 inches when 4 inches is considered optimum moisture. It is even more impressive when one considers that August/ September/October were well below average, totaling less than 6 inches for the three months. If you take those months out of the equation, the remaining 9 months hit an average of 7 inches per month. That is astounding. The ponds are full to overflowing and the water table is rising, providing insurance for the next dry spell which is sure to come. We hope for the best and plan for the worst, but 2015 goes into the books as among the best.

We are always looking ahead to what the macro-forecasters are saying and they are not hopeful, predicting a shift from El Nino to his sister, El Nina in the April or May time period. If proven accurate, that would mean dryness right when our spring grasses are trying to take root. The Spring Flush could be flushed. That is the worst sort of start for the summer growing season because if we don’t get our grasses tall going into the hot summer months, the soil temperature rises and growth is reatrded or suspended altogether. Can’t afford that, so we will watch closely and be ready to turn the irrigation on, an expensive alternative but less so than the consequence of spring dryness. I add that I think they are wrong because their assumption is based on cooler than usual waters on both of our coasts and I don’t think that will happen. Stay tuned.