Crunchy!

LM 29 Nov

Lawn 3 and LM – 29 Nov

Those of you in the Northern hemisphere who experience frosty weather will be used to the ground being crunchy underfoot.

You might be surprised to learn that those of us here in Cape Town, in the Southern hemisphere, also find the ground crunching under our feet.

But this has nothing to do with frost or frozen ground.

Nope.

We have severe water restrictions, because it just didn’t rain enough last winter (our rainfall season) and the dams are extremely low.Β This water has to last the whole summer season stretching out in front of us for the next sixΒ months before any rain can confidently be expected to fall again, in our rainy season in July; next winter for us.

The following series of four photos show the rapid dehydration of the grass on my lawn over eleven weeks.

Lawn - 7 Oct

Lawn 1 – 7 Oct

We are at level 3 water restrictions. This means no hose pipes and no watering the lawn. You can water plants with a watering can on three days of the week either very early or late in the day for an hour.

Lawn 2 and LM - 15 Oct

Lawn 2 and LM – 15 Oct

It is survival of the fittest for the plants out there.

Fortunately, most of my garden has indigenous plants that have survived many years with little water. It is just my rose bushes that I water a little once a week; and the new Erica bush my husband bought me when my old boy Mr Spaghetti Legs died. This little bush, although indigenous, has not had time yet to establish its roots, so I watch it like a hawk and water it a few times a week to ensure the roots do not dry out. It doesn’t need much water, but it does need some!

Lawn 3 and LM - 29 Nov

Lawn 3 and LM – 29 Nov

Still, this leaves my poor lawn shrivelling up and dying in the endless heat. This is very sad, because we had been nurturing the small patches of good grass; (see Rejuvenation.Β ) and they are definitely larger than last year. If I had water I would regularly water round the edges of these patches to promote their growth. Sadly I’ll have to watch as even these patches now die off.

Lawn 4 and LM - 23 Dec

Lawn 4 and LM – 23 Dec

On our walks now, Little Monkey and I crunch our way round everyone else’s grass verges that are already more brown than green.

Climate change?

Absolutely.

 

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50 thoughts on “Crunchy!

  1. Pingback: Hang in There, Baby! | Mad Cap Dog

  2. Bun Karyudo

    I’m sorry to hear about your “crunchy” grass. I wish there was some way to send you some of the northern hemisphere’s winter frost. Your garden could do with it and I certainly don’t need it.

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  3. Rachel M

    Brisbane has been through similar periods of water restriction and these seem to alternate with periods of floods. Several years ago it got particularly bad and people had to have timed showers. I can’t remember what the limit was but it was very short – 2 minutes or something like that.

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    1. scifihammy Post author

      Normally it rains enough during winter to last well through the summer, but we’ve had two dry years in a row now. It floods in other parts of the country, but not CT. We are right by the sea, but, apparently, desalination is too expensive. I think it’s time they reevaluated this!

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  4. Aquileana

    I am not liking that progression (although I love the photographs πŸ˜‰ ) Now that you mention it, the same thing happens in my little garden, here in Argentina… But the ants factors might be blamed too…
    Just a question: Do your dog pee on the grass?: cause that might be also a factor!: my cats do and after time it could turn out as dry little spots!)
    Sending best wishes… happy weekend πŸ˜€

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    1. scifihammy Post author

      Thank you Aquileana πŸ™‚ We also had bug problems in the lawn, which is why it took so long to grow.
      My dog is mostly in the back garden and her pee doesn’t burn the lawn, but I know what you mean, as my friend’s Great Dane leaves large burnt spots; I think it is the ammonia in the pee.
      Happy Weekend to you too πŸ™‚

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  5. blosslyn

    We use to use the bath water on the lawn back in the 80’s when we had a very bad drought…..we’ve got showers now, so that wouldn’t work anymore, hope you get rain soon πŸ™‚

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  6. sportsattitudes

    We had one summer a couple of years ago in Pennsylvania where it literally went almost two months without any significant rain and the crunchy factor was obscenely high. As well we had done a good job of rehabbing grass from prior bad winters and the like and this development was not welcome. Fortunately nature balanced itself out and once again the grass is green. Rain Dance on its way! πŸ™‚

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    1. scifihammy Post author

      You certainly appreciate the words “water is life” when living through a drought. I’m glad you got your rain in the end, but we will have to wait a few months for ours – even with a Rain Dance. πŸ™‚

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  7. HN

    Climate change yes. I tell my kids all the time, that someday soon a long shower will be a luxury. Appreciate our plenty, try to be quick and efficient, not to waste water. I hope the rain will come early for your area. Six months is a long time to wait.

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  8. Mike Fuller Author

    We have three 50 gallon rain barrels that fill from our gutters. The plants seem to do much better with the rain water than the water from our well. This past (Northern Hemi) summer was dry, dry, dry and the barrels were empty several times between rainfalls. Hang out laundry or use a bit of water to wash the car. That usually means rain.

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