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California's Drought

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Post  River Atkins on 6/12/2015, 3:27 am

The drought is a very good reason to invest in ollas for gardens
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Post  kauairosina on 6/12/2015, 12:03 pm

OK, OK, so what's ollas?
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Post  sanderson on 6/12/2015, 12:13 pm


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Post  audrey.jeanne.roberts on 6/12/2015, 12:45 pm

@sanderson wrote:We have always had a few days over 100 but recently those temps have been showing up earlier, starting in June, and more of them.  It used to be July-August with those scorchers.  Maybe we will have a really wet El Nino this winter and a slightly cooler summer.
From your keyboard to God's eyes, LOL!  Yes, please  Very Happy

I'm hoping all of the volcanic eruption activity will put enough ash into the air that it will cool things.
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Post  donnainzone5 on 6/12/2015, 3:22 pm

Actually, I'm expecting cooler and wetter weather on the West Coast this winter.  The supposedly strengthening El Nino, plus that volcanic ash, should serve to increase precipitation and cloud cover.  As I understand it, increasing moisture promotes the formation of water vapor, which would then precipitate around the tiny ash particles, thus increasing rain and snow.

I've read only a bit about some recent cloud research, but it appears that clouds can either warm or cool the Earth.  I believe that one of the variables is moisture content.
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Post  Kelejan on 6/12/2015, 5:52 pm

I see on the news today that California is severely restricting farmers' water use.

That is going to be very hard on most of them.  We will have to see how they handle it.

I am sure that some farmers will still do well if they have prepared, others will survive and a few may not.
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Post  donnainzone5 on 6/12/2015, 6:28 pm

If that drought persists (which it probably won't, if it's like Texas and parts of the Southwest, where they were calling it a "permanent" drought, and guess what's happening?), we'll all get hit in the pocketbook where it hurts, because harvests will be scant and prices will rise.
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Post  kauairosina on 6/12/2015, 6:46 pm

This is what we get for turning a dessert into a fruit bowl.  We have been fortunate so far but it can't last. We SFG folks are ahead of the game but everything is changing.  I understand that the south and midwest are very good for much of the sort of thing that California grows but now planted in cotton and corn and soybeans.  The corn for ethanol, of course, not for food and besides most of those crops GMO. 

Just read somewhere, don't have the link, where some farmers in India grow their own non-GMO veggie gardens for their families while doing industrial type farming for a living.  Also some good stuff coming out about the advantages of organic gardening for huge consumption.  We know how difficult that is but let's have it be the future.
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Post  River Atkins on 6/13/2015, 12:05 am

utilizing ollas is an ancient method of watering plants. an unglazed clay pot ut into the soil and the water seeps out slowly. great for drought conditions.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kslfqTxseMw
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Post  kauairosina on 6/13/2015, 12:46 am

I did look them up with the link.  Would love to get some.  they are probably available in California, like Tijuana or something (Do folks still go there?)
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Post  sanderson on 6/13/2015, 1:06 am

River, The only thing about using ollas in SFG is that it throws the planting system off. They would be great for row gardening.

Rosina, Pottery from Mexico may contain lead, etc. in the clay. A Lead Check Swab (R) purchased at Home Depot, etc, can let you know. I used to squeeze one drop each on 2 Q-tips and there was enough testing solution in the swab so I could test 3 surfaces. Going to Mexico, well, I don't know if the tourism has slowed down or not.

Kelejan, I haven't read the article yet. I will later tonight.

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Post  Marc Iverson on 6/13/2015, 2:28 am

@River Atkins wrote:utilizing ollas is an ancient method of watering plants. an unglazed clay pot ut into the soil and the water seeps out slowly. great for drought conditions.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kslfqTxseMw

These are such a wonderful idea. I've never seen them anything but prohibitively expensive, though. And I would certainly cover their tops, maybe with pantyhose or something, to keep the mosquitoes from breeding in them.
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Post  Marc Iverson on 6/13/2015, 2:30 am

@Kelejan wrote:I see on the news today that California is severely restricting farmers' water use.

That is going to be very hard on most of them.  We will have to see how they handle it.

I am sure that some farmers will still do well if they have prepared, others will survive and a few may not.

The almond farmers are in huge trouble.
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Post  Marc Iverson on 6/13/2015, 2:36 am

@kauairosina wrote:This is what we get for turning a dessert into a fruit bowl.

Yup. We grow a huge proportion of our nation's food in areas that cannot naturally sustain it. And we grow a huge proportion of our nation's people in an area that cannot naturally sustain them. It's a highly artificial situation and a naturally vulnerable one, all at very high stakes. I hope we figure it out one day, but it doesn't look like we're even in the vicinity of a clue.

One thing I like about Oregon is that when you flush the toilet, things disappear. Not necessarily so in the low-water toilets mandated in California. You have to be prepared to live with your little friends for a while, paying them the occasional visiting flush. After a while they almost start to feel like family.

I do not at all miss raising that lid for the hourly Poop Peek-a-Boo.
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Post  River Atkins on 6/13/2015, 3:59 am

you can order them from quite a few places. The Dervaes family, that has the little homestead in the city (Los Angeles) sells them also. There's also a lady from Austin with a company named Dripping Springs Ollas who makes them and they come with a lid/cover, which they should have anyway to stop evaporation. I would think they would make sure the clay is safe
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Post  sanderson on 6/13/2015, 4:10 am

Marc!!  Shocked Stores now carry toilets with larger cast orifices to handle the newer high fiber diets.  Oh, gads, can't believe we all know what Marc is talking about. Embarassed

Back to the Drought.

River, porous clay pots made in America should be perfectly safe.

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Post  Kelejan on 6/13/2015, 6:00 am

@Marc Iverson wrote:
@Kelejan wrote:I see on the news today that California is severely restricting farmers' water use.

That is going to be very hard on most of them.  We will have to see how they handle it.

I am sure that some farmers will still do well if they have prepared, others will survive and a few may not.

The almond farmers are in huge trouble.

I read somewhere that the almond farmers use 80% of the irrigated water in California.  Looks as though that is the section that will collapse first. That is what comes of promoting something i.e. almonds, as a super-food.

On a par with me not being able to get wood chips, as now Dr. Mercola and others are talking about them as a cheap source of carbon etc. Law of supply and demand working out.  The good doctor is now promoting Paul Gautschi and Paul Stamets for fungi.
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Post  kauairosina on 6/13/2015, 1:46 pm

No question about Paul Stamets being the best.  Pick up one or two of his books.  He is a genius.

Thanks for the reference on ollas.  Something to keep in the back of my head.
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Post  sanderson on 6/21/2015, 2:37 am


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Post  River Atkins on 6/21/2015, 4:11 am

You're welcome Smile
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Post  Kelejan on 6/22/2015, 9:27 pm

Looks like it is poking up into Canada. Mad
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Post  sanderson on 6/22/2015, 9:29 pm

That's what I thought.

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Post  Kelejan on 6/22/2015, 9:37 pm

Today it is overcast with a very  small chance of a shower but the following seven days shows nothing but a full sun and nothing else.

Right now it is 25C/77F going up to 39C/102F.

Thank goodness I am retired and I can please myself if I get up at five a.m. and do quite a bit in the garden and spend the afternoon in the shade doing nothing. Very Happy

It does mean that I have to water every day for things like tomatoes and walk to my friends house and water all her outdoor plants. Possibly may have to water them a couple of times a day by the end of  this week.

I do wonder how long this hot and dry  spell will last. For everyone's sake
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Post  sanderson on 6/23/2015, 4:16 am


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Post  Marc Iverson on 6/23/2015, 12:42 pm

Yeah I worry about that. Extra heat drying more things out this early on, before the real heat is supposed to even begin(!), suggests that we may have a bad fire season this year.

And I learned a couple of years ago that fires don't have to be very near you at all to scare the heck out of you with the level of smoke they produce.

If it's a bad fire season, buy masks early. You don't want to need one when they've all been sold out.
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