Water politics in Santa Barbara

I was sent a link by email to the Angry Poodle column in the Santa Barbara Independent. It's interesting reading if you've been following state water politics since there seems to be roughly parallel courses.



Rain 0.60"; 13.58" season total

Some heavy rain last night with occasional violent squalls today gave us 0.60"


Rain 0.03"; 12.98" season total

Just a light sprinkle last night. Clear tonight, but more rain is in the forecast for this weekend.

Season total is now 12.98"

- Posted at great expense from my iPhone


Light rain 0.02"; season total 12.95"

Rain was light yesterday and last night. I'm estimating the rainfall based on a brief look last night - by the time I got around to a close look at the gauge today it had mostly evaporated.

Although we have had a nice and healthy amount of rain for this point in our season, if we don't have any more rain this wet season we will still be within normal range (50% probability) for rainfall.


Garden after rain

Good rains to date have made the garden burst.

Poppies in the foreground are mixed inland and coastal variety. The photo is a little stretched in color and the color gradient across the flower isn't visible.
- Posted at great expense from my iPhone

Rain 0.2"; season total 12.93"

Overnight rain with a beautiful Saturday looking at me through the French doors!


What's Invasive!

Here's a promising app for your smart phone / iDevice from UCLA's Center for Embedded Networked Sensing (CENS).

I stumbled across the What's Invasive app for Android and iPhone last night.  The idea is that you can take a geo-referenced (with your handy GPS) photo of an invasive plant and/or make a brief note.  The photo is then sent to a central server where they can be publicly evaluated (so that everyone knows that you aren't taking photos of your kids and calling them weeds) and mapped so that remediation efforts can be well-targeted.

The Whats Invasive! website has a variety of areas defined for this mapping effort, but on the iPhone the only region that can currently be reported is the Santa Monica mountains - a useful target area for test due to its proximity to Santa Monica / West LA and the scads of iPhoners that live there.  The Andriod app works with all reporting areas.

If you are not an iPhone or Android user you can still participate by regular mobile phone or old fashioned email / web access.  They don't appear to have telegram or postcard interfaces written yet.

If your favorite reporting area is not defined, then you can create your own on their web site, subject to admin approval. I've created a Palos Verdes Penninsula locale, but beyond Brassica and Foeniculum I'm not sure what invasive species to put there. I seem to recall a recent threat by a new invasive species that had thought to be a non-issue.

  • Mobile Phones. Non GPS-enabled phones are also useful for capturing notes and photos (see Instructions: Email), and geolocation can be establshed later through our website (see Instructions: My Data & Photos) help page.
  • Email & Web. Email us (with optional photo) with the plant name as the subject to: mobile@whatinvasive.com. Or, log in and go to the My Data page to create a new observation from your computer. Read more on our Instructions: email associations help page.

Two other apps that might appeal to readers of this blog that use the same or similar mapping strategy are:
  • Biketastic! for documenting good routes and for collecting data to improve them.
  • What's Bloomin for recording locations of blooming plants in your neighborhood.
However, quick checks on their web presence seemed to indicate that they are not quite fully formed yet. I suggest a check back later.


0.21" rain; 12.73" season total

A PM storm swept through today. Though it came down hard at times, it gave us less than 1/4 inch.


Beautiful weather after the rain

A storm said to be headed our way on Saturday never appeared.

- Posted at great expense from my iPhone


Rain 3.41"; season total 12.52"

This was a pretty awesome storm for us, with another on its heels later today.  Median seasonal rainfall (50% probability) is in the low teens of inches in the Los Angeles area, so if we were to not have another storm this season we'd be close to "typical".