Another week of our phone alerts misinforming us about incoming thunderstorms and of big beautiful rainstorms sliding past us, close enough to smell but leaving us in the dust. We did get one decent rain which doubled our total for the month of July … of course, since our total was barely a third of an inch, it wasn’t all that amazing, alas
(‘Normal’ rainfall>1 inch per week)
Remember when we didn’t run the irrigation at all for a summer and remember when the screen porch got moldy because it rained so much and the fungus was a problem with crops and when the spreading quackgrass was a crisis and remember having to keep the weeds and grass cut underneath the electric fence line and bad hatches of mosquitoes! Hey look, the ripe tomatoes never get split on the vine by surprise rainfalls! And the driveway, it never washes out.
And this week when we determined that the well was putting out even half as much water as it can usually muster, we didn’t panic (much) – after taking apart the well shed and testing the things, I figured out that the problem seems to be with the pressure tank, and not the pump itself (which is 11 years old and we are keenly aware of its mortality during times of extreme drought). Still slightly ominous, but it’s nice to know (or strongly suspect anyway) that this is what has been causing the increasingly hard to ignore pressure fluctuations and air spitting and low yield … as well as (ha) it’s much easier and cheaper to fix a surface component than the one hats almost 150 feet below ground. We’ll see that the Well Guy has to say, but in the meantime we can reinflate the gradually failing air bladder as needed – bringing the flow back to a respectable 6.5 gallons per minute. The aquifer abides, and the kids are alright.
PS – Did you know that there are no poisonous berries here that have the aggregate fruit shape familiar from raspberries and blackberries? So you can gather and eat them with impunity, feed them to random children and relatives and strangers. The only threat is picking them under-ripe when they aren’t tasty. (OK and scratchy thorns and mosquitoes and ticks and perhaps even berry bears. But no poison fruits.)
So feel free to gather up the mixed mulberries and blackberries from your neighborhood brambles to enjoy your seasonal local foraging opportunities – you can eat them fresh or make jam or, during this coming heatwave keep them in a ziplock in the freezer and snack in them like chunks of nature’s popsicles.
PPS – Today our new WWOOFers George & Jude the Dragon arrived from Northern California, eager to enjoy the heatwave and smoky air with us for a couple of weeks.
Inside Box 7
- Tomatoes – the full size ones are just beginning to ripen, and the cherries are hitting their stride.
- Green Peppers
- Cabbage – not Napa, just the regular green cabbage type
- Italian Basil
- Radish Microgreens – add some zip to your tacos, eggs, and sammiches
THE A.I. IS ON STRIKE
So here are some recipes that Kristin thinks you might enjoy in this heat wave week:
- Tangy Loopy Cukes
- Cold soup is the only good soup in this heat … and you have zucchinis! This recipe also uses cucumbers, or this one looks tasty too: