Sunday, April 1, 2007

You Can't Fool Mother Nature

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.

10 comments:

supersusan said...

I like that story. Those trees did look pretty weird. Also I had to do the same thing for my morning glory vines, well, almost. They were getting too big for their little cups and I wanted to plant them outside so that they would climb up the posts in front of our porch, but they are not cold plants, so I had to keep them warm. We were going to use water walls, but one of the vines was going to be planted by the roses, so that wasn't going to work. we ended up putting jugs of water next to the plants and covering them with a towel at night after the sun went down. It worked, at least, so far. they are a little droopy and lost a few of their leaves, but they didn't freeze, so I think it will work. Now they just have to win the race against the roses before they are blocked from the sunlight when the roses get their leaves.

Anonymous said...

as soon as the vines get on the posts in front of your house than everything will be fine.

bladeboy said...

Mom, is their anybody else on the blog except Susan, You, Me, and Karrianne?

Christina said...

To Nathan (er, uh... bladeboy):

YES ME!

To "The grumpy gardener":

First- That is a false name! You are not even a grumpy lady!
Second- I like that invention of yours to keep stuff warm. I should try it for myself at coldy BYU games.
Third- Also I like all the alliterations that you use. They give me a chuckle.

jen said...

Lisa,

WOW!!! This is why people should blog. What a great story! What a great use of the English language! What a wonderful example to your children about ingenuity, industriousness and creativity. Thank you for sharing your great story. I will never look at Christmas lights in the same way again. Who knew that they could save the peaches??? :)

jen

Susan said...

yeah, totally! Christmas lights are officially a hero to me now! because that tree gives wonderful peaches and I would be heartbroken if they all died!

Lisa said...

I really don't think it made a stitch of a difference. I think we just got lucky and it didn't get quite as cold as the forecast predicted. We got lucky this time.

Now all my neighbors think I'm nuts. Of course, they already knew that, so hey -- what did I have to lose?

Susan said...

hmmm... that may be partially correct... just kidding. I don't think ALL of our neighbors think you are nuts! Ü

Karianne said...

Okay, I'm a little behind because I haven't had a chance to get on yet, thanks SO MUCH to homework and my life, but this is really cool!

I liked having christmas lights out there because at night then it made it seem like Christmas agian. But then I wanted it to be spring so it kind of confused me.

Not all of our neighbors think you're nuts. Also I think that Christmas lights is a little less noticeable than say, what looks like a spot light bulb on the back porch (aka the cox's porch light).

Nathan, dude, lot's of people spell my name wrong, but I figured my own brother could probably get it right. There's only one R. I guess you never have to write it though, so I'll let you off this time.

Christina said...

Dang, Nathan. Thats pretty sad.