Rain, Rain, Go Away
I always thought of Texas as very dry. Not this year. We've had nearly 20 inches of rain since January, with almost nine inches in May and June, which has barely begun. These are not gentle showers, but huge downpours with plenty of lightning and thunder. The backyard is a lake, with standing water that will take days to absorb into an already soaked lawn. Our pool is overflowing, sending water into the street. Local lakes and ponds are brimful of water.
The other night, we were having a serious electrical storm with lightning strikes and loud thunder. At midnight, the fire alarm went off, sending shrieks of sound. At the same time, our inactive ADT system, installed years ago by a previous homeowner, began emitting a continuous loud whine from three key pads in the house. No matter how many keys I pushed or combinations thereof, it just wouldn't stop.
Next morning, with this irritating sound still going on, our daughter Hannah came by to see if she could help. We ended up turning off the main breaker, removing the panels from the wall and snipping the red wire that was somehow transmitting electrical current to the keypad, even though the entire system had been unplugged a while ago. There was no way to re-install the panels, so I nipped out to Home Depot and purchased three large, blank outlet plates to cover the holes. It won't be especially attractive, but better than the ancient panels that were immune to cleaning.
About two weeks ago, during one of these midnight downpours, the soil in my standing garden newly planted with herbs and peppers, became too wet and heavy, collapsing the bottom and sending dirt and plants onto the soil below. Again, Home Depot to the rescue. I bought two large oblong plastic planters and popped out the drainage holes. Then I trudged into the soggy yard and filled them with some of the soil. I was able to salvage almost all the plants and re-homed them into the planters until we figure out what to do. (That is if it ever dries out.) We may detach the legs, set the box into the yard and replant everything. In the meantime, the plants seem to be thriving,
I'm itching to get to my new perennial garden and deadhead the flowers. The plants and shrubs seem to be holding up, but all this rain is probably draining nutrients from the soil, so I'll fertilize as soon as I'm able. One piece of good news is that my dwarf gardenia is really going to town, covered with creamy white blossoms.
This rainy, rainy spring is no doubt the prelude to a very hot, humid summer so I should probably be grateful for the temporarily cooler temps. Such is life in the Lone Star State.
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I'm Chris Barabasz, retired from a 35-year career managing communications for health care development (that's fundraising for you civilians). I'm a wife, mother, grandmother and freelance writer. My husband Andy and I moved from Delaware to Texas to be closer to our daughters and three adorable grandchildren.