Saved by the lady with dirty fingernails

That lady would be me of course. How it managed to get in there is anybody’s guess, and if I hadn’t looked in the bucket…well, a tail wouldn’t have been the only thing lost. I tried to get it to scoot onto the plant marker but it was faster to flip the bucket upside down.

What a month! Unless you’re a hobby gardener like myself, it’s hard to explain or understand this ‘madness’ that overcomes you in spring. I always feel like I need to have my hands in soil, and for every seed sowed and sprouted, another one is ready for the same process. We’ve been enjoying good weather, despite occasional chilly nights. If the forecast is any number lower than what I’m comfortable with, there’s enough space in the kitchen to bring in young seedlings.

Water rationing goes into effect mid-April. No washing cars at home (you can go to the carwash and pay), no filling up the kiddie pool, and use common sense in water consumption. We’ve shunned baths in favor of showers a long time ago, so no worries there. I’ve taken things a step further by placing a bucket in the shower stall to catch water while waiting for it to warm up. Watering the lawn is limited to 60 minutes, specifically between 11pm to 6pm or something like that. The scarcity of rainfall is all over the news these days so people need to take action, and why not now?

Today it’s actually raining – more like drizzling, but constant – so it’s like a day off from dirt. Normally I would be baking up a storm, but garden catalogs, both in print and online, are calling to me. Gotta get my hands on some cool plants.

6 thoughts on “Saved by the lady with dirty fingernails

    1. Rowena Post author

      Kat, I have been brainstorming every which way possible to keep the ground moist and the plants happy. It does help that we live in an area with its own microclimate, but every spare bit of ‘grey water’ is used instead of going down the drain.

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  1. Nonna T

    Aw, what a kind heart. I am sorry about your drought. Having lived a long time under drought conditions, I know how challenging it can be. As far as gardening, do they have drip irrigation systems that one can buy? There are also drip hoses and then there is old fashioned “olla” method that people in the southwestern US and Mexico have used for ages to get water to the plants.
    Watering the garden at night is best, as the water has a chance to soak in and not evaporate with the sun. You may see more wildlife in your garden, seeking water. I suspect the prices for arborio rice will go up too 😦

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    1. Rowena Post author

      It’s the farms that will suffer the most. But the real problem is that the water pipelines are so old (I read an article that said some are up to 70 years old!) and they’ve become brittle and are breaking all over the place, especially the big cities and in the south.

      At my father-in-law’s place, the recent water bill was a fine for 4500€ because of a pipe that had been leaking for at least 2 years. I forgot how much cubic meters of water was lost, but my husband said it was enough to fill a family-size swimming pool! Long story short, Italy’s water distribution system is ancient, but even more worrying is that they don’t catch the problem soon enough. Do you know that they ‘estimate’ water consumption from previous billings? They may actually check periodically, but for sure they’re short on staff!

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      1. Nonna T

        I agree with you about the farms. Two years ago, we were in Modena and visited a farm and learned about balsamic vinegar and the process and talked to the man who produced the balsamic vinegar. The farm has been in his family for generations. Even then, the drought prospect seemed very serious. He was very passionate about carrying on the family tradition. I wish the best for him and his family.

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      2. Rowena Post author

        Visiting a balsamic producer is among so many things (parmigiano! prosciutto di Parma!) that I have yet to do. It’s incredible how they keep traditions going, despite hardships due to climate and/or bureaucratic obstacles. We make an effort to visit local produce farmers whenever possible.

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