Thursday, 13 July 2017

Soggy Summer

So far this year, Ottawa has seen 95 days with rain (out of 191). That's the most precipitation since Environment Canada started record keeping. I certainly cannot recall a wetter year. Between rains, I scurry outside for a walk-about and to do some yard work but the mosquitoes are extra bad this year, and also seem to be extra ravenous.

The record rainfall rendered my vegetable garden's clay soil too soggy for the rotor tiller this Spring. Consequently, poppies and other self seeding flowers are growing wild where there would typically be Swiss chard, beets, peas, onions and lettuce. Well, I did manage to plant some tomatoes that I started from seed in the house in late winter, but whether they get enough sun to ripen is another matter.

Poppies and wildflowers (weeds) have taken over my vegetable patch.

I expect a reduction in my honey harvest as well. Rainy days prevent the bees from foraging. Instead, they stay in their dwellings and consume their groceries. And I can relate to that, myself!

The flowers are thriving with all this rain. Cheerful looking hollyhocks.

My flower border's Monarda looks especially perky.

This cherry tree was planted decades ago by my father.

It's sweet fruit pleases Robins, Catbirds, Cedar Waxwings and, of course, myself.

Sumac bobs are now plump and colourful.

2017 is not the best foraging year for my honey bees.

Another rainy morning as a dainty visitor browses through my garden.


  1. Hi Florence, is it really only 95 out of 191 because it seems the very rare day without some rainfall here in our neck of Ontario. And massive downpours with huge thunder and lightening...have you had that too? But your garden looks lush and so to see photos of the growing things and envious of your cherry tree. I've wondered how this wet affects the nesting too. What do you think?

    1. I agree, it certainly seems like we got more, but that is what the Ottawa news stations report. And yes, my area also received torrential downpours plus a lot of thunder and lightning. Local farmers are having problems with drowned seedlings and new subdivisions with inadequate drainage had massive basement floodings earlier on. I doubt if the nesting birds are too bothered though. Their feathers seem water resistant and a devoted mom would keep the eggs and babies well covered. There should be lots of berries and insects this year. One of the robins nesting near my deck as raised three sets of youngsters already. I'm amazed by how fast those babies grow!

  2. A lovely garden, and if not for the bees, the flowers are doing so well. And a visitor, we could only dream of that down here. Too much rain and snow all over NZ, roads closed, one whole area about 2 hours north of us completely isolated.

    1. Wow, your area really is under a wintry lockdown. So glad you have a nice supply of firewood to keep you home snug and warm.

  3. It is incredible how much rain we have received to date. I think I have watered the gardens only twice so far. Your flowers look fabulous. Too bad about your veggie garden! Your cherries look delicious though.
    Enjoy your day!

  4. I so miss my cherry tree. Happily there is a serviceberry, with lots of berries there!
    Ottawa has had so much more rain that we had. I'm shocked at the difference. That Lake Effect Precipitation!
    Your garden is gorgeous! I'm failed at hollyhocks in several homes. Again, happy to enjoy yours!


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