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The Green and My Worry

posted Nov 7, 2016, 2:21 PM by Lynn Moody
So far this autumn - in late October - we got/have gotten 1.15 inch of rain.  (we measure, yes)  One inch of it came as a subtropical storm, was warm, and I think that is why the seeds in the soil sprouted right away and have been growing like crazy.  In places the grasses are two inches tall already.  Seems like in past years, the annuals grow more slowly in response to rain.  It's glorious.  So on Sunday Petunia and I went for a walk and I documented some of these crazy growing little plants.
Here's a view of mixed annual grasses and forbs (herbaceous non-grasses).  Can't tell yet what they are but I did see lots of filaree sprouting up.
Here's a view of another stand, even further along, mixed grasses and forbs.  This is the floor of the small canyon that contains our house.
And a close-up of some of the plants in the scene above.  See how rocky our canyon soils are!  Clay and rocks.  Our floodplain soils, and the river terraces, can also be rocky and are very sandy.
This is a little way up the canyon wall.
And, for a macroscopic view, here is a shot looking downstream, more or less southward, toward the mouth of the canyon.  You can just see the floodplain.  Also you can see part of the roof of our house.  The reddish brown plants in the foreground are California buckwheat, the red tops are last summer's flowers, hopefully containing some seeds for the quail, other birds, and small animals (or big animals) to feast on.

Here is my artistic statement of the day - a barn owl feather perched picturesquely on a small chamise shrub.

With all this green, it's very difficult to not feel good and encouraged.  But I'm one of those people who, if I don't have anything to worry about, will find or manufacture something.  So now my worry is that we won't see any more rain for a long time - I would very much like the rains to continue to keep the green going!  The 10-day forecast has no rain in the prediction for our area.  Well, worrying won't help...  If you are in California, enjoy the green!

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