I think our friend and neighbour John Barry is getting discouraged. John loves mowing grass. He’s the one who does the mowing at the Manse, as well as at various other places in Queensborough. His trusty riding mower is normally very busy. But it has been so dry in the area for the past few weeks that the grass is, as John says, burning up, and there’s nothing to mow.
(The folks doing the restoration of a lovely old stone house in neighbouring Prince Edward County who blog at Gorsline House [gorslinehouse.wordpress.com] did a post yesterday about the drought, noting that ” … the once-lush green swamp grasses behind the house are now brown and flattened, and the algae covered bedrock is sun-bleached white. Obviously two months without substantial rain have severely cut back on the water supply…” If you read the post you’ll see that they also had a run-in with a well that ran dry. More on our own possible close call on that front in a bit.)
Except for a part that’s always in the shade of an ash tree, the Manse lawn is downright crispy to walk on. And what should be a nice expanse of green is instead a mix of yellow and brown.
But hey, it’s grass, and grass is resilient. It’ll be green once more, if it ever rains again – which people are beginning to wonder about.
The perennial garden at the front of the Manse looks as least as peaky (to quote Molly Weasley). The poor plants are trying their best to grow and bloom, but they’re having a pretty rough go of it.
So last weekend Raymond hooked up the hose, we bought a spray nozzle, and we gave both the garden and the mostly bare patch of lawn where a big old tree stump was recently removed a nice drink. Everything was going swimmingly (so to speak) for 15 minutes or so, but then the stream of water from the hose turned decidedly weak. “Uh-oh,” thought I, putting on my thinking cap at last. Drought not only means no rain from the sky; it means the groundwater levels are probably very low too. The level of water in the well was doubtless way down. “Better stop,” I told Raymond. “We don’t want the well to run dry.”
That was when he betrayed his urban upbringing. “What happens when a well runs dry?” he asked.
Raymond, you don’t want to know.