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How odd…

Watering in with a sprinkler

It’s like we’ve gone directly from winter to summer. Less than a WEEK since the ground dried out enough to walk on it and till it, I’m actually out there WATERING… This is really odd.

I’m sure we’ve had unseasonably hot Aprils before, where watering in newly seeded crops was necessary, still, it’s only common sense to chalk this up as another of the consistently bizarre weather events we’ve been having in the last three years or so… In other words: global warming, I guess.

“Normally,” April is a good month once it warms up, because our rather heavy clay-loam soil holds moisture well, and just post-snow, it’s wet enough that you don’t have to water in what you’ve seeded. A spring bonus!

Instead, what’s going on here is, in a handful of days, the top inch or more of the ground has dried out completely in the unusual heat. That means shallowly-sown seed, like spinach, lettuce, radish, beets, and chard, is sitting in perfectly dry soil.

I put in peas at around 1.5″ (4.25cm), and they were just barely in nice, moist earth. But these other guys, what can I do?

I considered setting the seeder deeper, but that could just bury them too far for good, quick germination (I’ve messed around with too deep before…).

Or, out with the sprinkler.

I don’t like using sprinklers, I don’t have water to waste, but here, it’s much the more reasonable alternative to hand-watering a 50’x100′ area, when there’s so much else to do.

The pond irrigation isn’t yet set up, so the water’s coming from the barn well, where there’s such low pressure that only the cheapest, most lightweight garden sprinkler will oscillate, where better quality, heavier duty ones shoot a stream of water straight ahead and won’t budge.

Irrigation comes early, and cheap gear is every once in a while…good!



  1. Jon

    The same thing is happening across the lake from you, where I live in northern Ohio — strong sun and unusually low humidity.  I just placed an order for my first drip irrigation setup.

  2. Loved your bit about the hoses!  I’m still sorting through mine.  Had one explode in the greenhouse today.  Guess it got a bit heat stressed.  The weather has been a bit warm here in East Central Ohio too.  I’ve had to water a bit, but I’m holding out for rain this weekend on some things (course when you do that is rains everywhere except on the garden!)
    Posted pictures of tomatoes set in the greenhouse today!  It’s great to get a jump on the season!

  3. Steve Mudge

    Well, I wish we had your problem of watering verses what we’ve got–a vegie garden half destroyed by quarter-sized hail…even broke a window in the house!

  4. Adam

    Perhaps, climate change is a better word then global warming, considering the lovely winter we had, but lack of precipitation in April? :P  Odd weather to say the least, but at least you can get everything in the ground, and so can we with our big equipment on our anti-tiny farm… ;)

  5. I’m in the same boat as Jon (though that’s changing today), and felt ridiculous watering my garden this past week. I’m sorry you’re having the same problem, but glad I’m not alone in my ridiculousness. :)

  6. I didn’t think irrigation would be at the top of my priorities when starting out.  In our climate (eastern Ontario) and I guess most of the eastern north america, you could usually depend on a reasonable amount of rain throughout the growing season.  After the last couple of years I’ve changed my mind and I have a drip irrigation system ready for my first season this year.  I fully expected it to be an abnormally wet year given that I bought all the equipment though!


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