“Water is a blessing when it falls gently on parched fields,
turning the green earth, causing the birds to sing.”
~ Donald Worster, professor of American History, University of Kansas
Spring has arrived and the appropriate weather for the occasion also came along. No invitation needed, just a step outdoors lands you into the “grand affair.” Critters and birds of all sorts are scampering and flying about, looking for the perfect home and food to start a family. Most of us would agree they have found a good place to settle.
Our yards are quite entertaining, a celebration hosted by Mother Nature. Fortunately, by evening time most of the partiers are exhausted; their chirps, tweets and chattering go silent as they head for bed. Then out come the nocturnal party animals. Their sounds go unheard by us. Our dogs, bless their hearts, more than make up for our inadequacy.
A quiet evening ends abruptly as Fido takes off barking, running through the house, out the dog door and into the backyard. In fear of a possible mountain lion or coyote, good dog owners are not far behind.
“What is it girl (Abby), what do you see?” A few more barks and tail wags later, sometimes the culprits are revealed – raccoons playing on the roof, possums snacking on vine-ripened tomatoes, skunks (hopefully un-afraid) digging for earthworms and perhaps a prowling coyote. Time for bed!
Spring is the time to have your face toward the sun and a hose in your hand. Wait a minute. During a drought is no time for recreational watering. Every drop must be considered, and all watering intentional. Therefore our yard needs adjusting; nothing drastic, just a few simple changes. My plans:
• Replace fussy plants with drought tolerant ones.
• Clear high maintenance areas and replace with mulch, a birdbath, big rocks and a single flowerpot.
• No pumpkins or other heavy water-drinking fruits or vegetables.
• Prima donna pony packs of flowers I will resist.
• Mulch, mulch and mulch!
Our yards will become a Darwinian example of “survival of the fittest.”
The arrival of sprinkles to the Crescenta Valley was short-lived as breezy conditions prevailed. Weekend weather, expect mostly clear skies with highs around 70 degrees. March is “going out like a lamb.”
As for April showers … a weak storm system arrives as we flip the calendar’s page.
Sue Kilpatrick is a Crescenta
Valley resident and Official Skywarn Spotter for the National Weather Service.
Reach her at