Warm up day

It was a cold start to today. I got up at 7am due to, well I’m not sure what. But the outside thermometer said it was 10 degrees outside. It’s not just after 1pm and we’ve made it up to 41. Its still cold out there. Any little breeze still registers as cold. Not the best day for a walk.

The forecast says tomorrow should hit a balmy 66. Now I don’t know if that will be a warm 66 or a cool 66, but I’m betting on the latter. But tomorrow night will still be below freezing.

But make no mistake, tomorrow may hit 66 but the day after is back into the 40’s. And we’ll stay there thru the weekend. But next week we should hopefully pull ourselves into a warm up and get into the 60’s. Considering this is central Texas, prolonged cold can be an issue.

I recently read an article about why in this area we are told to keep water dripping. This would be unheard of in other area. But it appears the reason is in part due to our building codes. The article I read mentioned that in areas where it regularly gets cold, pipes are buried deeper underground. For instance, here in central Texas water pipes may only be buried 12″, 1 foot, deep. That means a prolonged cold could affect those pipes. Also here in my house I have 2 faucets on outside walls. The article I read mentioned that pips in other area with prolonged cold bury their pipes much deeper, and don’t put faucets on outside walls. If that’s true, if you bury pipes 5 feet down, they would probably survive prolonged cold better than pipes only buried 1 foot down. Interesting things you have to learn in different areas of the country.

One other hopeful bit of news is that next week, starting Monday we may get rain. I say may since you never know if any one particular area will get the rain, nor how much we will get. But at least it will be warmer and rain. I’d rather that than have rain in cold weather, then get colder weather and have it turn into ice. Ice is never fun to drive in. And I don’t walk my dog in ice. So my dog should be able to get back to daily walks as the weather changes.

More rain

Last nights rain continued. How much rain did we actually get, well that’s a good question. It appears my weather station at some point got reset and the time was off. So when I went to bed last night at midnight by my watch, it didn’t match the time on the weather station. So even though it said 0.79 inches what it continued to add until midnight its time, when it would have reset for the new day is anybody’s guess.

And to add to it last night was a night of lightning, thunder, rain, and power outages. We actually had 2 power outages that I know of.

Nonetheless today, now at 9:45pm we have 3.08 inches of rain on the weather station. We didn’t have any more power outages during the day. But we did have a couple more thunderstorms. Both last night, and this evening we have had downpours. The kind where the wind blows, the sky darkens, and the rain pours down.

Today we got to all of 77 degrees. I know because that was around 2:45 when I walked the dogs. But by 5pm it wasn’t much warmer. And then shortly after 5:30ish it began to pour. I was at the friends for dinner and we could watch it darken then watch rain begin to pour from the skies. It didn’t last too long, but it probably gave us a good 1/2 or more inches of rain.

Now at almost 10pm we have the before mentioned 3.08 inches of rain, and 72 degrees. For summer in Austin that is a bit below the norm. Yet tomorrow we should get up to the low 90’s (92 is the forecast) and our chances of rain drop down to 20%. The chance of rain drops after that, the sun will begin coming out and by Sunday we should be high 90’s (forecast for Sunday is 98).

As for the garden, I’m still harvesting Anaheim chilies. And it looks like there are some green beans ready to be harvested. But I’m not sure how the tomato plants are taking the downpours. I’m expecting the answer is going to be not great. I know some plants in pots are getting blown over due to the wind.

Crazy weather.

Rain again

After two days of nice weather, or at least rather nice no rain days, we are back to rain. Its not bad temperature, we’ve been in the 70’s, but today was another 0.65 inches of rain. We are back to expecting rain for the next few days. We’ll see how much more rain we get, but we are expecting another 3-4 days of rain.

We were lucky here in central Texas. Some of the rain expected to hit us ended up shifting south of us. So it still hit parts of Texas, just not this area.

Some areas, such as Lake Charles Louisiana have gotten about 20 inches of rain so far this month. That’s a lot of rain.

We’ll see how much more continues to fall. I’ll keep you posted.

Weather station

I know I’ve mentioned I put in a new weather station, but I still have the old weather station up. Just as a refresher, the new one is an all in one unit on my fence line, out in the open. The old one has part of it up against the house (the temperature and humidity gauge), and the wind portion on my deck.

Right now the new one, way out in the open shows a temperature of 65 with a humidity of 98%. The old one shows a temperature of 67 with a humidity of 92%.

I find this interesting as I think the new one out in the open may be a more accurate reading. I did learn that the new unit rain gauge resets itself at midnight. The other night we got rain late, after 11PM. I checked the reading just before midnight and it read 0.19. But the next morning it read 0.09. So we got total of about 0.28 inches of rain. And yes, this is why I wanted the new weather station. I think getting more accurate readings will help me better care for my garden.

Just as a side note, I’ve been dumping some pots from our storm last month. Some of the plants look like they are coming back, and some seeds took off. I actually have some seeds coming up from last year that hadn’t germinated. But for pots on my deck, many of which were cutting of other plants, I decided that I didn’t really have a reason to keep them, and some I just didn’t want to keep. How many pots of the same succulent did I want!! Do I’ve been teasing roots and plants out of pots and putting the dirt into one big pot to reuse. And I figure I will check the pots, see which are worth keeping, and reuse them for planting something else.

One other note, I had purchased some starter plants at Home Depot the other week, tomatoes and peppers. They are doing great. I also broke down and purchased a grow light from Amazon. I have a sun room, that I am going to turn into a plant room. I have plants in there on a bakers rack. Now I am putting my seed pots in there, with the grow light. Since it is an indoor room the temperature in there is always house warm, but the light is a different story. Hopefully the grow light will help the seedlings. We’ll see.

The weather station

Well I’ve had both weather stations up almost a week now. And the differences are beginning to be noticeable. A great example is right now. The weather station out by the fence, the new on, shows a temperature of 57 degrees with wind of 2.5 mph.

But the old weather station, the one on the deck and closer to the house, with the temperature gauge by the house, shows a temperature of 64 with a wind of 0 (zero). I’ve noticed that there is a difference most of the time. Sometimes the temperature is different by a small amount 2 or 3 degrees, but sometimes it more like 7 or 8 degrees. I’ve also noticed that the wind is different from the fence line to the deck.

These may not really sound like information of great interest, but as a gardener it can be. When it comes to making sure plants get enough water and support, you have to know the temperature and the wind. A tomato plants needs less support for a light 5 mph wind then it does for a 25 mph wind. Also, if the temperature at the fence line is warmer than on the deck, which I suspect it will be, knowing how much warmer will help me with watering.

And of course if I decide to add a shade cloth this year I will be able to know why I am doing it. And maybe when to put it up, and when to take it down.