Growing season begins

Today was a nice warm 62. Yesterday we hit a high of 87 degrees. The 5 and 10 day forecasts say we will stay warmish, though not up to the mid 80’s. With this weather, growing season has definitely begun.

Today we pulled off the covers we had over some of the citrus trees, the Meyer lemons. Well, some of those trees have blossoms on them. These plants are all in pots and that’s part of the reason I had covered them for the season. But with the warm weather we’ve been having I felt it was time to uncover them. I also began setting up the watering system and watered plants. The 5 day forecast says we might get some rain, so uncovering pots and letting them get more water will probably be good for the plants.

I also took the opportunity to water the seeds I had put in the other week. At this point some of the seed is actually starting to sprout. The peas and beans are coming up and are recognizable. As for other seed, some of them are just starting to sprout, just tiny, barely 1/4 inch up, but they are beginning to sprout. I wasn’t sure if they would since the seed was old and the weather undecided.

I’m actually kind of excited about this. Even though I may be moving, and not be here long enough to harvest what I’ve planted, I’m still glad I’ve planted seeds. I know the apple trees have blossoms, and I’ve actually been noticing some bees in the yard. Hopefully the bees have been pollinating those blossoms. I may not still be here when they become apples, but I’m still glad to see them growing. Hopefully the next owners will enjoy the garden and the fruit trees.

I’m already thinking about what I want to plant in the new garden.

So don’t worry, Cats Garden will continue in one form or another.

Strange warm up

We definitely got some cold around here. Last Friday some areas got snow and other cold weather. But since then its been warming, yet foggy and overcast. The kind of fog that doesn’t burn off much. This morning it was foggy, with fog weather alerts. But now, getting on to evening time, its still very much overcast, cool – 55 degrees, and damp. But the fog, overcast, and damp seem to be hanging on. The weather forecast calls for some clearing skies tomorrow, partly cloudy is the official term. And by Thursday we should climb into the low 70’s.

But the interesting part is that seed I put in recently, remember that? Well some of the seed is starting to sprout. So the cold we had didn’t seem to have that much affect on it. Now the fruit trees, mainly the apples, still have flowers. But I’m not too sure if those blossoms are going to get pollinated, I haven’t seen many bees, but its been such a warm winter they could be pollinated and we could get fruit. I think that’s a wait and see.

One concern that has been mentioned is because its been so warm of a winter, how much problem will we have with bugs. The chance is that it will be a bad bug spring and summer. But again, that’s a wait and see.

But trees are getting buds, so spring is trying to arrive.

We got a cold front

We definitely got a cold front last night. We got down to 31 last night. Its taken until 2pm to make it up to 35. I doubt we’ll get much warmer. Some areas of Austin have gotten snow and some graupel mixtures (think ice over snowflakes). Not the best weather out there, but a definite cold snap.

With luck we’ll stay above freezing this evening but that remains to be seen. And hopefully it will stay above freezing tomorrow. If not, it could get ugly outside in the morning. But here, we haven’t had any rain, no precipitation of any kind. So here I’m not so worried about the weather. But in other sections of Austin it could get ugly.

I’m not sure how my seed will fair, but if we have to I will put in more seed. Such is life and Austin weather.

UPDATE: Its 3pm and we are now getting ice pellets. So I don’t expect us to get any good weather until tomorrow.

Its getting cold!

Okay, we truly have a cold front coming thru. We made it to a high of 69 degrees today. Right now, at almost 10PM we are down to 39 degrees. It is cold, and if you go outside the light wind just bores right thru you. I had to take the boys out about half an hour ago, and it was cold.

They are saying we might get down to freezing. We’ll see, but right now I would have to say it is a possibility. To make it worse, we’re only supposed to get up to 38 degrees tomorrow. And then tomorrow night will get cold again. There’s even a chance of possible rain tomorrow.

Now Saturday, the day after tomorrow, we will warm ever so slightly. Hopefully Saturday we should make it to the low 40’s, with the evening cold again. But by Sunday we will be into the 50’s with more chance of rain.

Then next week we expect to be back to the 60’s.

This is Texas weather. Warm, than cool, maybe cold, then back to warm. And its not quite mid February. There’s still a chance of freeze for another month. But my fruit trees, mainly my apples. are already getting blossoms. Hopefully we don’t get a hard freeze during the next month. But who knows. Its just wait and see.


Rain

Its been a cool day. Last night was about 44, and we hit a high of 60 today. But now in the evening, its a cool 50.8 with rain. Its more of a heavy drizzle. I say heavy drizzle because its been raining the past few hours and we’ve only have .35 inches of rain. So its definitely not a hard rain. I’m not sure how much rain we’ll end up with, but it will be slow in coming. But that’s good, at least it should soak in and water everything well.

A slow soaking rain would be nice. I have lots to plant and the rain will help that. I get an email from Old Farmers Almanac that give planting reminders. Right now the following seeds should be going in, but under covers:

  • broccoli *
  • summer cabbage
  • cauliflower
  • eggplant
  • kale *
  • leek
  • leaf lettuce *
  • onion *
  • peas *
  • pepper *
  • spinach *
  • large tomatoes *

All those with an asterisk are seeds I want to get in tomorrow. Even though I may be moving, still working on that, I figure as long as I’m here the garden must go on. Who knows, maybe if I plant seed, they come up, it will help sell the house. Maybe the new owners will be gardeners and will enjoy the crops. You never know.

But either way its time to start getting seed in. So the rain will be welcome in the garden.

Cool nights

I’m not going to say we’ve had the cold the fruit trees need, but we have had some colder nights. Last night we got down to 30 here at the house so the fruit trees are still getting some cold.

During this past week I actually started the annual fruit tree branch pruning. It has to be done and I find it best to do it during the cold season when they are dormant. Considering our crazy weather I haven’t had a lot of chances for that. But if I want any chance of fruit this year, those tree must be pruned.

In case you’re wondering how to prune a fruit tree I strongly suggest checking out Old Farmer’s Almanac, gardening for their information and videos. One thing I have learned the hard way, is you will make mistakes. But most of the time, not all the time, its not fatal to the tree. Its a tree and it does grow. A mistake might set fruiting back a little bit, but it usually won’t kill a tree. That means you must learn from your mistakes and try to do better next year.

If you decide to prune your fruit trees and want more information, check out gardening sites online. Now be aware that checking multiple ones, and seeing how similar they are will be more helpful than just taking one and using them as a reference. It also helps if you look for sites and information that deal with what you are looking for. Pruning a pomegranate is far different from pruning an apple tree.

But this information is true for all gardening. How and when to plant in Michigan will be different from gardening in south Florida. The climates are just too different. So when you go searching for how-to information on gardening, beware. Look for as reputable sites as possible.

Cold!

Yesterday was one cold wet day. It got up to all of 37 degrees, but we got 1.80 inches of rain. That was cold rain. Last night we got down to 34 degrees.

Today we are supposed to get up to 52, stay cloudy, but we are not expecting any rain. On the other hand they say we should get down to 26 tonight. That will be cold.

And you have to love our weather. After a low of 26 tonight we should hit 63 degrees tomorrow. Yup, that’s central Texas weather for you.

Its getting colder

Last night we hit a low of 35, with about 0,21 inches of rain. That’s cold outside. At least the fruit trees will enjoy it. I’m not so sure our dogs will enjoy it, but then they don’t have to be out in it long. Since our dogs are little, one weighs 9 lbs, the other one weighs 11 lbs, the cold does affect them.

One thing I don’t get is how we are supposed to have a high of 42 today, a low of 39, then hit a high of 66 tomorrow. Granted we have cloud cover and its wet outside, but how do we get one day of warm weather then back to cold? Such is the weather in Austin, TX. But at least it seems to be a light rain, no heavy drenching rain. Knowing how we can get downpours, its nice to not have that with this cold. But we do sometimes get those drenching downpours in the summer. I guess that’s something to be said for winter rain in this area.

I’ll keep the weather changes posted for the next few days. We’ll see what the weather does.

Love Texas weather

We’ve had lovely warm weather over the Christmas weekend. But now we’re finally hitting some cooler weather. Tonight we should get down to about 35, and by Tuesday, Jan 1, 2019 we might get down just below freezing. They are forecasting Jan 1 night to get down to 30, with the following night (Wed. Jan 2) getting down to 28.

If this actually happens, maybe my fruit trees will finally go into dormancy. I would really like it to get cold enough for me to begin cutting them back. But I can’t do that until it gets cold enough. And of course, if it doesn’t get cold and stay cold long enough, I won’t get much fruit next year. Let’s hope we get cold.

Since we did have rain the other night, actually we had a storm that dumped 1-1/2 inches here at the house, I spent some time pulling weeds. We’ve had such warm weather that I seemed to be growing dandelions. So I pulled a lot of them up.

Due to DH health issues I am considering moving next year. We’ll see if that happens or not. But in preparation for that possibility, I have begun rethinking my garden. I had a set of square “plastic” raised beds. They are lined in a type of felt fabric to hold in the soil. But since we may leave this house I’m considering dismantling them and putting that soil into the built in raised beds. Originally these plastic raised beds were where I grew strawberries. But I can move strawberries to other beds or put them in pots. And I think removing them might help me clean up the yard.

Merry Christmas 2018

Well I am sorry to say it is a warm Christmas day here. We will hit a lovely 69 today, and 68 tomorrow. Our low last night was all of 55 degrees. That may sound lovely, but it also means we are having a warm winter. Maybe it will cool down later, I sure hope so.

What’s so wrong about a warm winter, you ask. Well it means bugs will be more active, they won’t go dormant nor will some die in the cold, and my fruit trees won’t get enough cold so I will have less of a harvest. So personally I would like some cool or cold weather. But alas we’ve been in the 60’s with occasional 70 degree days thrown in for good measure.

With any sort of luck we might get down to freezing this weekend. I sure hope so for my plant’s health.

But nonetheless, Merry Christmas to all.