Sunday, January 16, 2011

Rain makes the garden grow...but we've had more than enough now thanks.

Flooding rains have hit this area in the past week and this was the view from my garden on Friday. There had been cows standing on the river flat paddock a couple of hours before this photo was taken but they had been moved to higher ground. Pretty much the whole of the Flowerdale valley was covered in water by lunch time. By yesterday it was back to its normal size although still flowing strongly. Lots of fences had been ripped out by the fast flowing water but our 3 irrigation pumps on the river's edge were unscathed, only lapped by the height of the water leaving a little bit of mud on the pump house floor.
All the unseasonal rain has taken its toll on the garden this year. The potatoes have not taken kindly to torrential downpours and many plants collapsed in December, before this last lot of rain. Hopefully the few remaining plants still with green leaves might produce a bit of a crop. The plums which are starting to ripen now are so split from the various downpours they have endured, that they are not going to be sound enough to bottle. I think I might try to salvage some in a plum cake tonight. I am hoping the later fruiting varieties might be ok. The raspberry crop was still in full swing last week but I wasn't able to pick for several days in a row as they were absolutely waterlogged. I now have to leave them for a few days to dry out and then work out which ones are going to go mouldy and which ones are ok to pick. Luckily, I have picked quite a few kilos for the freezer already. Everything is a lot later ripening than normal and I doubt that I will get any tomatoes until mid February. I hope they are ok after all this waterlogging. I have just spent a few hours thinning out the lush growth to make sure there is plenty of air flow around them and to prevent mildew and rot.

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