Monday, May 23, 2011

Lets talk Rain

Well, before I talk about the recent rain we have received-let me give you a garden update.

I planted my vegetable garden on Sunday. Turning the area over first and then raking level. The usual-Tomatoes, peppers and a couple of carrots. I also planted my "unknowns" to let them grow so that I may further determine what the heck they are! I cleaned out the pond filter and re-potted my water lilly. Crossing my fingers it performs. I fertilized my roses with the new Bayer three step process. I have used the Bayer product before, just not this new version. So I am hopeful it will take care of the insect issues I had with the rose buds last year and they will perform. If they perform like they did last year, well they are going to be dug and either moved or trashed-because I can't have roses that don't perform they way they should.

I also finally figured out how to take macro photos on my camera. I know, I know-what took me so long right??? Well, I took some glorious photos to share with you. I will put them at the bottom.

WATER/RAIN: Here in the Denver area and the area considered to be the front range of Colorado we have been the recent recipients of large amounts of precipitation. I believe close to five inches so far in the month of May. Now, keep in mind that we are a semi-arid climate generally receiving about 15" of precipitation annually. Some broadcasts-radio/tv have been commented that the large amounts of rain can be detrimental to a tree's health and a certified arborist should be called out to evaluate the trees. This, generally, speaking is true. Our soils, in this area predominantly alkaline clay soils. As some have reported the threat of the moisture collecting on the leaf surface can cause excess weight on the plant causing what we call 'storm damage'. I just don't see how this is possible. This is typically a very big concern for us here during the early fall before leaves have senesced or in the early spring after leaf emergence-when we are at risk for heavy wet snows. These storms can cause severe structural damage and sometimes catastrophic. The larger concern would be for the root system of the plant. All plants (and living things for that matter) require water to survive, thrive, and grow. All plants have a threshold of this vital ingredient before it starts to cause detrimental effects. Too much water or too little can have very similar signs/symptoms. My concern for our plants during these heavy periods of rain (and not a cloud burst) - several days of heavy rains- would be for the root systems. It can compromise a root system just as severely dry weather can. It weakens the soils the plant is rooted in and the plant may become unstable, especially when high winds are involved during the storm. It can also cause a lack of oxygen-effectively drowning the plant because the roots cannot absorb oxygen. Yes, people the roots need oxygen. The leaves take in the Carbon Dioxide and the roots take in Oxygen. Our trees in Colorado endure great extremes-sometimes even from day to day. Imagine standing in one place your entire life and enduring all they do? My best advice-no matter where you live-if you have a concern for your trees, have a tree that is aged, leaning, diseased/infested please do call a certified arborist out to evaluate your trees. They provide us with so many benefits. And, it is not even a bad idea to do this annually-just as you would service your swimming pool, AC unit, furnace or car. And to be honest, sometimes we cannot even tell or prevent something from happening in a healthy tree. It is a living thing and therefore, can be unpredictable. Happy Gardening folks. And a happy Memorial Day. Take a moment to remember our veterans or someone special in your life you have lost.


ann said...

Your pictures are so pretty. good information.

Vetsy said...

Heather that was a lot of info you shared and very good info.

I had no idea that excessive rains could be a problem for trees and other plant life... Nor had I ever thought about how a tree tuck in Oxygen. Thanks for sharing.

Here in Michigan we have had so much rain I had to change my garden plans...It's been an odd spring for many across the nation.