2018-04-27

0.1" rain; 4.25" total for the season

4/19/2018 0.1" rain (gauge)
0.11" weather station

The rain gauge and the weather station seem to be synced back up again.  Perhaps it really was the power outage that threw the station off.

In any case, we are up to 4.25" for the season and it looks like that's about it.  This isn't an all-time low rainfall, but it's definitely on the lower end of the scale.

2018-04-08

Purchases from Matilija Nursery

Back in mid december I made the following purchases from Matilija Nursery.  I hadn't been before, and I had a good time talking with the owner, Bob.  He was particularly impressed that I made the longish drive from home.  I managed to combine it with a trip to the Payne Foundation and a tasty rib lunch, so it wasn't too much of a chore for me.

Heuchera maxima (Island coral bells) - 5x 1gal for the front yard next to the driveway.
Iris 'Wilder Than Ever' - 5x 1gal also for the front yard next to the driveway.  I have a swath of 'Canyon Snow' and a swath of these now.  I hope that's a good plan - I was trying for something more orderly than random irises.  It doesn't look like they will bloom this year, but they do seem healthy. Planting out waited a month or so on the Bob's recommendation because the Iris weren't quite well-rooted enough when I purchased them.  Now, as I write in April, they seem to all made it past the crucial first month or so despite major garden soil excavations from the local skunks or possums (looking for grubs).

Monardella odoratissima (Mountain monardella) - 1x 5gal. This is A wonderfully strong and wild-smelling mint.  According to CalFlora there are two observations in Los Angeles County; one is identified as M. glauca, one as M. odoratissima.  There are three subspecies: Monardella odoratissima ssp. glauca, Monardella odoratissima ssp. odoratissima, Monardella odoratissima ssp. pallida.  I'm not sure which one this is.  Come by some time and take a smell - it's marvelous.  I have it atop a sandy berm in my back yard near a path so that passersby can reach out and get the smell on their hands.

Sisyrinchium bellum (Blue-eyed grass) - 4x1gal. There are a number of selections of this plant in teh plant trade - often cute dwarf varieties. I've fallen for their cuteness many times.  However, I've also had consistent bad luck with the cute ones lasting in my garden.  I think they require more water and shade than I can give.  I have had good luck with the regular species, so these augment some existing plants.  I had one volunteer this year as well, so perhaps with a critical mass of S. bellum I will have a self-sustaining colony. 

2018-04-06

0.70" of rain; 4.15" total this season

Late March storms are bringing us up in rainfall and the weather station needs some fixin'. 

The weather station clearly wasn't making reasonable measurements in this storm, so I'm going back to the future and using the rain gauge measurements.  I will have to climb up and wash out the weather station - its performance suggests that it could be plugged. 

Previously I had 3.45" measured with rain gauge, and with this late March storm we now have 4.15".

As I write (~2 weeks after this March rain) we have a 10-20% chance of rain this weekend, so perhaps I will be able to add some more to the season.

3/21/18
 0.10" from rain gauge
 0.00 from weather station

3/22/18
 0.50" from rain gauge
 0.09" from weather station - power failure issue?

3/23/18
 0.10" on rain gauge

2018-03-19

Rainfall total 3.45", but it could be 3.359". This is a two watch problem.

I have a weather station now, mounted up on the roof, with a wireless remote readout down in the comfort of the home.  It was a gift from Juli - Thanks hon!  I'm in the midst of figuring out how it's calibrated against my tried and true rain gauge. 

Here's the three first trials, broken down by storm:

Weather station 3/10: 0.39" + 3/11 (thus far) 0.18" = 0.57"
Rain gauge 0.69"

Weather station 3/14: 0.21" + 3/15: 0.12 = 0.33"
Rain gauge 3/16 0.3" (upon return from trip, so perhaps evaporation explains the difference)

Weather station 3/17: 0.009"
Rain gauge 3/17: 0.01"

That 3/10 storm didn't have close agreement, which was weird given the much closer tracking of the following two.  I checked for operator error a couple times, but without any mistakes found and I don't recall an errant jet of water from the hose.

This puts my backyard rainfall at 3.359" (weather station) of 3.45" (rain gauge) which brings to mind a favorite saying of mine, "Only the man with two watches doesn't know what time it is."

2018-03-17

Arrived from Annie’s today

Houston and Juli gave me a gift card to Annie's Annuals a while back and today arrived...

1 Coreopsis gigantea (to bring to 3 the number in my garden). These look like Dr. Seuss daisys - they have such a loopy appearance in bloom. 

2 Deschampsia caespitosa (Tufted Hair Grass) because I want to see how it does and learn a bit about native grasses.  Usually I research the crap out of the plants I desire before purchase, but I see with a backward lens that this grass probably requires more water than I will willingly supply and that Calflora doesn't have any observations locally.  What is doing well is Nasella pulchra, which has naturalized on my hillside below the Ceanothus.  I do note that in an otherwise near-grassless yard that the dogs like to munch D. caespitosa.  Note: an alternate spelling is cespitosa

3 Eriophyllum confertiflorum - yellow yarrow, though it's not really a yarrow.

I got them all planted out last weekend, so I'm feeling good.

Brent - via iPhone

2018-03-05

0.36" rain; 2.45" season total

2/27/18  0.1" (PM)
3/3/18 0.33"
3/4/18 0.02"

The state is breathing a sign of relief with this latest storm which brought high snowfalls (for a single storm) to the Sierra.  Still, we are far under average.

2018-02-27

Rain 0.20"; rainfall total 2.09"


I recorded 1.78" of rain since January.  This makes 2.09" of rain.  That's not a lot of rain, though it's more than I remembered before I tallied up my notes today. 

We are lucky to have more on the way later this week according to recent weather reports.

1-9-2018 1.0"
1-9-2019 0.45"
1-13-2018 0.02"
2/13/2018 0.10"
2/14/2018 0.01"
2/27/2018 0.20"