Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Drenching Rains in Mission

Roger here....  The storm clouds are gathering.  Yay!!!!!   We are finally going to get a soaking rain in Mission.  

Dianne and I watched the radar on our I-phones.  It is headed this way!  We brought in the chair cushions and took pictures of the clouds as they rolled in.

The winds picked up.  It was blowing so hard that the water from our fountain blew away from the collecting bowl and onto the driveway.

I am so glad we spent the money to have gutters installed on the coach house.  We are really going to need them today.

Here it comes!  A four-incher!  Just to clarify, a four-incher in Indiana would mean four inches in depth.  A four-incher in Texas means four inches between the raindrops.  In Indiana, rain is measured with a rain gauge.  In Texas, rain is measured with a ruler.  

Dianne and I actually sat outside during the hour-long spitting of rain and enjoyed getting splattered even though we did not really even get wet.  Bandido thought it was fun.  

All of last season's potted plants died during the five months we were away -- not nearly enough rain.  (Zero probably equates to not nearly enough).  We expected that would probably happen.  As Dianne mentioned in the last post, one of our first tasks was to buy new plants to replace them.  With daily watering, the new plants are doing well. 



Firecracker Plant
Since we were already playing in the dirt, we decided to add a couple large blue pots to our landscaped areas.

Pride of Barbados

We even found a place to grow a couple of tomato plants that Dianne grew from seed and has been babying in the motor home.  The pots are on rollers so we can move them inside if it gets too cold --- right now it is hard to imagine that it would ever get too cold here.

Almost all of the plants that were in the ground survived the drought.  Our planting areas and our lawn have an underground drip irrigation system.  However, I must say that they are doing even better with a daily squirt of water.

The survivors (a few of them)......

"Belinda's Dream" Shrub Rose

Aloe Vera
Dianne here:  They try to keep with organic landscaping here at Retama.  The other day the landscaping crew sprinkled composted manure on all the beds, and yesterday they came back with fresh mulch.  Roger and I have spread truckloads of mulch over the years at our various homes, and it's so nice to just enjoy the results here without the backbreaking sweat that goes along with it!  

Prickly Pear Cactus & Meyer Lemon
We measured lemon tree (I grew it from seed about 5 years ago) just before we left last May, and it was 16" tall.  The day we returned, Roger re-measured it, and it is now 24" tall (shown on the right in the above photo).  I guess lemon tree likes it here! 

The pet picture of the day shows Bandido inspecting the pumpkin zombie that appeared in our back yard after the drenching rain.  His first reaction was to growl at it while slowly slinking forward.  Then he figured out that it was one of Dianne's toys.

A final note from Dianne:  This little scarecrow (it's an iron frame with a loop on top to place a pumpkin head) has had several incarnations over the years, as shown in the following photos from our former home in Pendleton, Indiana:

White Pumpkin Scarecrow + "Little Mermaid" Kaia
Here it is another year, with another photo of a very young Kaia posing beside it (I've shown this photo before; it's still one of my favorites of Kaia):

Painted Pumpkin Head + Kaia
And finally, Kaia and her mom, Amanda, posing with my scarecrow on a different Halloween:

Amanda, Kaia, and Carved Head Pumpkin Scarecrow
I haven't been able to use my scarecrow frame for the past three years that we've been full-timing, so it was fun to get it out to use it here in Texas, with a few minor modifications!  A real pumpkin wouldn't last a week in 90+ degree temps, so we found a metal one here at the local grocery store.  I substituted a small prickly pear cactus instead of a basket of apples for the same reason.


Malone said...

I can smell the rain on the dirt! Love that little Halloween scarecrow, but I am a sucker for Halloween decorations, and old photos of kids when they were little are fun too.

Nancy and Bill said...

Beautiful flowers!!

The weather here is very fallish and the flowers are coming to an end;o(( Be sure to share more photos throughout the winter to bring us smiles:o))