The Grumpy Gardener had a dilemma: two weeks of 60+ degree temperatures had fooled the peach trees into breaking dormancy early. Buds all over the trees showed pink, and some blooms had already opened. The beauty of this hopeful sign of spring was spoiled by the weatherman, whose forecast predicted a late winter storm bringing snow and nightly temperatures as low as 27 degrees. Twenty-seven degrees! Temps that cold would freeze the swelling and newly opened buds, and potentially wipe out this year's peach crop.
What to do?
The Gardener pondered and paced as the temperature dropped. She worried and watched as the clouds darkened. Then it began to rain, and the drops striking the window were not rain, but slush. She hung her head in despair, resigned to a September without peaches. And then, her chin lifted in triumph, for suddenly the solution crystalized like honey left too long in the pantry: Christmas Lights! Down to the storage room she raced to dig out strings of large bulb outdoor lights and several commercial grade extension cords.
Within minutes the lights were strung and lit. She stood back, hands on ample hips, to examine her work. Would it be enough? Some insurance was required before the gardener would sleep that night. Some way was needed to hold the heat from the lights near the blossoms. Another half-baked idea formed, and the hapless husband was recruited. They labored mightily in the cold with numb fingers, and at last it was done.
The Grumpy Gardener smiled beatifically and gave her very best beauty pageant wave to the neighbors who slowed and gazed in awe at her ingenuity.
Mother Nature laughed. And froze the peach blossoms anyway.