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Thursday, September 04, 2008

The Color of Hope

Finally, finally, after a dry August, it rained in Indianapolis today, nearly an inch on my garden.

It feels like it was just in the knick of time. My lawn was an even tan throughout, so tan and dry and dormant that I had started to water it this past weekend. And then I noticed some of the shrubs I planted this spring looked like they had been hit by a blow torch. So I watered them, too.

And as perennial flowers wilted for lack of water, I watered them, too.

I know some gardeners, especially in places like Texas, have suffered through a long summer of drought and record heat. They are probably thinking right now, “What? You’re complaining after just one month of no rain?”

In some ways, I think this dry month after three months of plentiful amounts of rainfall, was harder on the plants. The plants were spoiled through May, June, July. They didn’t have to grow roots too deep to get to water. It was always there! Right there!

The plants got lazy.

That’s why when August came and the rain stopped, the plants went into shock. They wilted. They mourned the lack of water.

But finally today it rained.

And now I’m seeing hints of green in my once tan lawn.

Green is the color of hope, of life, of renewal. It’s almost like a new spring.

Except we know that with shorter days and soon cooler temperatures, it isn’t spring, it’s fall. The green will not last forever. We know that plants are already starting to change, to slow down and stop the growth and renewal of leaves and buds and focus more on root growth, to prepare for winter.

That’s why fall is good for planting. All that root growth makes the trees and shrubs stronger, more able to withstand periods of drought, like this past August.

So as the grass turns green once again, it gives me hope. Now I’m ready to dig and mulch and plant again.

15 comments:

Muum said...

ah, but in Texas (or desert-y Utah) we have irrigation! that means we can water at will (which one's Will?)

glad you got some rain!

Cindy, MCOK said...

Hey, one month of no rain is a problem just about anywhere in the U.S. when that month is August. Irrigation systems are good, but nothing beats rain! I hope to see it again here on my corner of Katy someday ...

Leslie said...

Carol~your lawn makes me want to cry! I'm proud of you for not wasting water but you are the lawn goddess~what are you doing for your mental health? I hope you get lots of lovely soft rain to green up your lawn in time to cut it before it snows.

PGL said...

That's what my lawn was looking like a few weeks ago before we got some rain. Makes all the difference in the world. You're right, in the garden, the color of hope is green. Great post Carol.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

I was thrilled to get the rain today. We actually had some rain on Tuesday too. Things already look so much better.

Aunt Debbi/kurts mom said...

I refused to water our st augastine lawn during the weeks of drought. It looked like it was doomed. The good rains lately have allowed it to bounce right back. Glad to see a little green in yours

Yolanda Elizabet said...

I think you're right, it is harder to get a long spell of no rain after months with lots of rain. It's good to see your lawn turning into the colour of hope once again. My lawn is so green it hurts your eyes, must be all that rain (far too much) we've been getting this summer. Over here we are longing for another colour; the colour of deep blue skies. :-)

Have a great weekend!

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Happy to hear you got the rain that was scattered across IN. We only got a miserable sprinkle or two. Not even enough to make mud. Even at that it gives me hope that there will be more rain to follow.

Kathy said...

Is there a rule for how long a lawn can be brown before it will die? We never water our lawn and it has come back after every drought. But it is a mixture of plants, not a true grass lawn.

Dee/reddirtramblings said...

Indeed it is, my friend. I think that's why green is so soothing to the eye and the soul.~~Dee

Fran Sorin said...

Carol-
On the Northeast coast, we've also had an incredibly dry August. It has taken its toll. I am used to my grass turning a straw color in the heat of mid to late summer and have even become accustomed to leaves beginning to drop off of trees due to dryness. But I have finally broken down this week to begin to soak some bushes and trees
for fear that I may lose some. Tomorrow we are finally supposed to receive a weekend of good solid rain. Yippee!! Fran

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

We got about 2" out of this. It was as if this rain was trying to make up for the past month. Because of all the snow we had last year and all the rain earlier in the year, my shrubs & trees were able to handle this dryness better than they usually would at this point. But then I started watering them right after the regular rains had stopped. Happy rain!

mss @ Zanthan Gardens said...

I'm glad you got some rain. It's hard to go dry when the plants have been doing so well. I know I was more miserable in June than I am now. We've already gone through the brown phase. Now we are in the starting over phase. But for you...you're in the hanging on to high summer phase, so I think it's tougher for you.

Pam/Digging said...

Carol, I think we Texas gardeners can completely sympathize with you about not having rain. I'm glad you finally got some. I hope you were out dancing in it, as I do after a long dry spell.

Carol said...

Thanks all for the very nice and supportive comments. Today was overcast, no rain, but cooler. I'll take it. I'm renewed and ready to go in the garden.

Carol, May Dreams Gardens