This year was epic drought… the kind that rolls around every hundred years or so. Farmers whose families have farmed here for a century had never seen drought like this. The name of the game? Keeping things alive. We’ve planted hundreds of trees, transforming this farm from an old, neglected alfalfa field into a thriving ecosystem, but trees need water. Rain, we prayed for it. We drew rain turtles on the sidewalk in chalk hoping to call the rain spirits forth. We danced our rain dances, and we asked father sky to send us water. Clouds danced around the edges, tried to drop their water on us, but the earth was so hot it evaporated before touching the ground. We drove by old cottonwoods yellowing far too early. All around town trees died in peoples front yards.We managed to keep our trees and plants alive, but only just. The garden suffered, corn grew short and flowered early. Grasshoppers ate more than their share.
And then the rain came, a torrential downpour for weeks, only too late in the season to really help. Just grateful everything got a wonderful drink before dormancy. This winter, we hope for long snows and cold on the mountains enough to keep the water frozen in snow, to slowly melt and absorb into the aquifers this spring.