The Smell of Rain

Living in a semi-arid dessert has many perks; a longer growing season, lots of sun to feed the plants, plenty of time spent outdoors, and so much more. One of my favourite things is the appreciation for the power of rain. We don’t see a lot of it, and this spring has had a lot of talk about rain, but not much actual rain falling. That is until a week ago.

June is generally a wetter month for us, but we saw almost no rain in June. The first week of July however, has been wet. Not the usual 5 minute showers that we are used to, but actual full days of drizzling rain. I love the smell of rain, probably because we don’t get to enjoy it often. I always find that a fresh rain brings a fresh air smell, mixed with wet dirt, and plants. I like to crack open the windows on the house and let that fresh smell come in, while listening to the soothing sound of the rain hitting leaves, grass, trees and our deck.

K and I enjoyed a morning coffee and tea in the hot tub this morning, which for July, is a first for us. Granted, the hot tub is turned down to a lower temperature, and I sat mostly out of the water, it was a relaxing morning listening to the sounds of birds, bugs and water dripping. After the hot tub, we decided to go for a bike ride in the misty rain, and then came home and walked through our garden to see how everything has been growing.

The garden is booming! I can’t believe how much change there is from day to day. I know that I updated the blog with our plants last week, but it is impressive how much one week of rain has changed the plants and the vegetables.

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The potato plants are busting out of the towers and ready for another board and some more hay. This year, I think we will be able to get all the boards on without a worry of the tops not getting enough sunlight.

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The carrots have doubled in size and are getting much bushier tops. Our first row should be ready for harvest within the next few weeks.

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The peter pan squash plant is taking over. So much so, that I have had to trim some of the leaves back to make sure it doesn’t fully take over half the bed. But the good news, is we have our first squash growing, popping out within the last 4 days.

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The pepper plants are holding their own against the squash. They have grown bushier, taller and are sprouting all sorts of peppers. I think I will have a lot of pickling ahead of me since most of our plants are banana peppers. We ate our first sweet pepper and it was so crunchy and flavourful.

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The snap peas are growing like crazy, which is great. We have been picking them daily and adding them to our meals…or just eating them while we wander the yard. They are the best crispy, crunchy treat.

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The cucumber plant is coming along slowly but surely. Usually the cucumbers are one of the first plants to take off, but this year we had a real problem getting our seeds started. The first batch was an old seed packet, but we planted 3 seeds from a brand new pack and still only ended up with one plant. I think that it will really grow once we get some heat.

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The tomatoes are looking fantastic. They have been growing steadily and in the last week they have all developed some fruit. Our first few tomatoes will be ready to eat today. They are a type of Orange Zinger, which we really liked last year. They are a little more tart, and less sweet.

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The rain has really made an impact on our plants, and hopefully our surrounding forests, which are usually extremely dry and prone to wildfire this time of year. I will happily take a week or two of rain if it means that we avoid the couple months of smokey weather that is our summer fire season.

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