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April 4, 2011

a Thunderstorm near Pritzerbe

Image via Wikipedia

How the Big, Mean Thunderstorm Changed Things

Greetings, dear reader and welcome to the sweet smell of Spring.  At least here in the Greater Bippus Area, the GBA, we are being treated to the fresh smell of spring, freshly arrived on strong southern winds.  The kind of strong southern winds that bring moisture, and thunderstorms.  And we got some rain last night, without a rain gage being set up outside yet it is hard to tell how much rain, but I would venture to guess it was a half inch or more.  And the strong wind and the warm southern moisture did a number on my freshly planted, *biodynamic* onion bed.

A Patch of Biodynamics Washed into the footpath

Recall, dear reader that the biodynamic raised bed that I worked up to a 14 inch height was about two foot by twenty foot long.  After raking all the little organic crumbs and manure back up onto the bed, I used a board, roughly 12″ x 30″ to compress the peak of the bed, and to somewhat firm the fluffy,loose, raised bed to something a little more rain tolerant.  Perhaps I should have spent a little more time on the tamping board, as one patch near the east end washed out.  A patch about 2′ by 2′ is now much shallower, and the footpath is covered with fluffy, loose and wonderfully worked topsoil.

30 *Victims* Rescued

Overall, I planted near to 400 onion sets in that bed, and this morning after the rain stopped I recovered 30 onion sets.  Let’s see 30 divided by 400, goes seven times remainder two, carry the zero down; give me an attrition rate of 7.5%.  I recovered those onion bulbs, and am drying them on paper towel right now.  After I work up another raised bed my intention is to re-set those 30 and see what happens.  And you can bet your lucky stars that next time I will firm the soil at least 7.5 X 2 = 15% more firmly than I did last time.

Rain and thunderstorms are forecast for today and into tonight, so it may be a few days before outdoor garden work can proceed.  And there are still 3 more quarts of onion sets to go into the ground.  Looks like the right conditions for transplanting seedlings from the planting flats to the larger 3″ home- made *growth* pots.  If you can, get on out and sniff the air, you may find the scent of spring has arrived in your neck of the woods.

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