Welcome to austinagrodolce … My family and I garden with more intention and enthusiasm than allocated budget or overall design plan. It shows. Wildlife populations don't seem to notice our lack of cohesive design, they just like the native plants here. It seems by growing local we've thrown out a welcome mat. Occasionally, we're surprised at who (and what) shows up.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


Recently the forecast for our area advised that conditions were ripe for violent thunderstorms, including the usual bad weather hat trick, damaging winds, dangerous hail and possibly, tornadoes.

Here in Central Texas we are used to our neighbors to the North getting pounded by bad weather.  More typically our area's major concerns surround rain - either way too much or way too little.  This forecast implied we might be in for a taste of what it means to live in the tip end of Tornado Alley for real.  That got my attention.

All of this followed a day when I'd read a short article speculating why there were so few violent storm systems being generated in tornado alley for this year. It was only a few days later that the season kicked into gear, with tornadic activity in Granbury, Texas shortly followed by the massive twister that flattened much of Moore, Oklahoma.

I decided to take the warnings seriously and went out into our planting beds with an eye towards relocating items that might be damaged by large hail, and/or putting away items that could, in high wind situations, become damaging projectile missiles.
The bottle tree was my first concern and as I denuded it of empties I realized several pieces were in jeopardy of being broken or launched.
 A strawberry planter needed to come in under cover, and all our lightweight plastic watering jugs usually stored atop the rain barrels needed to be safely corralled.

As I walked around I realized with a sinking sensation everything was at risk.  Three Meyer lemon trees were heavy with fruit.
 A tomato plant which has so far not produced any fruit was yet still blooming and MIGHT make tomatoes if I could remember to water and feed it sufficiently.

There were flowers everywhere and I wondered where the small feral cat we've been feeding would shelter if the projected severe weather developed in our area.
Most of the time I eye our garden spaces with the view of work yet to be done.  I scan quickly across blooms or fruit to focus on pests or weeds or watering.

On this particular morning I decided it was time to slow down and take a closer look at all the beauty and bounty and rightness that was essentially sheltering in place right under my nose.
As it turned out we did not get high winds, large hail, or a single drop of rain.  The storms all went well to the north of us, as is usual.  I'm working to hold on to my gratitude and the feeling of being surrounded by precious and fragile life in all its beauty. Weeds and pests and undone chores inclusive.


Lancashire rose said...

But I bet you got rain yesterday and today and lots of it. There was a spell of hail yesterday so I rushed out to pull in all my cactus. Some are already damaged from last time.

TexasDeb said...

You won that bet Ms. Jenny - and then some. Around four inches when all was said and done - and all that without damaging wind or hail either one, so we have lots to be grateful for.

Fingers crossed your cacti weren't too badly damaged - your photos of their blooms show them to be simply gorgeous. Thanks for dropping in!