Archive for the 'Weather' Category

Green Thumb Sunday: Fortress of solitude

Fortress of solitude

Gardeners, plant and nature lovers can join in Green Thumb Sunday every week. Visit As the Garden Grows for more information.


Farewell, February

By my clock, I have just a little more than five hours left in this Iowa February. As should be clear from my ongoing whining, I will not miss it. Farewell, February, and don’t let the door of the snowplow hit you in the bazoom on the way out.

That being said, even with last night’s snow bombs falling outside my front door, and with my car getting stuck on a side street this morning, and with my boots starting to give way on that whole waterproof thing, I found myself hopeful on my drive home from work.

First of all, it’s light out when I go home. Actually light. As in, the sun didn’t set 15 minutes before the end of the work day. And the sunset light tonight was just about magic: casting a tangerine glow over the fresh snow from yesterday.

Second of all, it was warm enough today that a surprising amount of snow melted. In fact, even though the pile of snow in my front yard is still up to my shoulder, the very edge of the grass was visible by the time I got home.

Grass. Visible. Muddy grass, for sure, but grass nonetheless. Good riddance, February. I know March brings its own messy weather portfolio, but I’m ready to trade one for the other, particularly since it gets me that much closer to planting again.

Winter: the season that won’t surrender

This picture?


That’s what’s happening outside my front door right this very minute.

I know this winter is going to end eventually, but seriously? It feels like I’m never going to see the garden again.

Green Thumb Sunday: Where my garden was

Where my garden was

Gardeners, plant and nature lovers can join in Green Thumb Sunday every week. Visit As the Garden Grows for more information.

Breaking the ice

There is still a crazy load of snow and ice slicking up Iowa City, but at least for today, the sun shone down and did some helpful melting-like work.

Last night, some of my friends and I headed out for the evening, and we decided we were all sick of snow boots: although no one braved sky-high heels, there were some definite signs of fashion on our collective feet. Of course, the flip side of that was we all nearly Icy sidewalkkilled ourselves walking from my house, where we gathered for a pre-festivities festivity, to the vehicle that carried us on our way.

So, this afternoon, I spent a little time smacking at the ice out front with my shovel, busting up big chunks and reclaiming about two feet of my sidewalk that has not been seen in a couple of weeks.

There’s still a heck of an opportunity to land on one’s bazoom out there, and there’s snow and freezing rain in this week’s forecast, but for whatever reason, the sight of ice coming off the sidewalk gave me a little hope. The sooner it’s off the sidewalk, the sooner it’s off the garden.

Beyond cabin fever

If people in Iowa are talking about anything besides the weather, I can’t tell you what that is. The temperatures, the piled-up snow, the general dreariness of the situation threatens.

“Do you guys feel like you have cabin fever yet?” asked Ty Greenstein of Girlyman tonight at The Englert Theatre.

The audience hooted back a half-hearted yes-like noise, which is all anyone can muster these days.

I got an email today from a friend whose husband is in Boston right now, where 40 degrees feels springlike compared to the icebox moonscape that Iowa has become. I sympathized. I had the briefest of brief (with all apologies to friends who there was no way I was going to have time to see and/or call) trips to DC for a client meeting, but found myself with about a half-hour to spend on the banks of the Potomac near the Jefferson Memorial on Thursday afternoon.

DC BudsI spent much of the half-hour on a conference call with two people from work, but it was the best conference call I’d had in weeks: the sun sparkling off the water, the planes flying into National Airport overhead, the early cherry blossom buds swelling. D.C. hit somewhere in the neighborhood of 45 degrees that afternoon, and because it was about 50 degrees warmer than its been in Iowa, I wandered around with my coat unzipped and my face turned up to the sun.

That half an hour did more for my mood and spirits than anything has in weeks. Of course, it also meant the return to Iowa was one of the most difficult I’ve had in a long time—as the plane descended into the frozen wasteland, I shrank into my seat. When they had a problem with the gate and made us sit on the plane for 10 minutes while they straightened that out, I wished they would give up and turn the plane around, fly it somewhere warmer, less frozen, less difficult to navigate.

The birds sing outside in the mornings these days, and it’s light again when we leave work, so I know spring is coming. I know this, too, because I whined so badly last year, and spring came nonetheless. I know I won’t be punished any further for my bad attitude and cranky disposition.

But let’s just call it what it is, shall we? Because at this point, I’m beyond cabin fever.

Green Thumb Sunday: Fork in the tree

Snow fork in the tree

Gardeners, plant and nature lovers can join in Green Thumb Sunday every week. Visit As the Garden Grows for more information.

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All words and images (unless otherwise credited) on The Inadvertent Gardener are © 2006-2008 Eugenia E. Gratto. All rights reserved.

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