June 22, 2011

It Rained!

It rained!
Finally, overnight the rain came.

The rain gauge shows eight tenths of an inch – a fair amount but the figure belies the significance when you consider that it's 20 percent of the 4 inches we've gotten all year.

For some of my summer annuals like this purple hyacinth bean, yesterday provided their first taste of rainwater. How sweet it is.

Washout after Tropical Storm Hermine 9/2010
Months after we did the work, the storm let us test our solution to the gravel washout that plagues our slopey backyard. I am proud and relieved to report that our repair held.

Cemented gravel holds after rain
No washout after thunderstorm on 6/22/2011
Here's what we did. In April, following the advice of Bob Webster, we refreshed the decayed granite, dusted Portland Cement (not Quickrete), mixed the granite and cement using brooms and rakes, then sprayed the area with a hose to set the cement.

Mixing the cement and gravel on the ground (as opposed to in the wheel barrel) was a chore. If you don't dust the cement on the ground evenly, you create ugly white splotches. If you try this project yourself, here's my advice: don't try to save time or energy mixing directly on the ground. Much like painting, you'll thank yourself for doing the prep work so that you don't have to go back and keep touching up your messes.

All's well that ends well though. I'm looking forward to the first tropical weather event of the season so that we can put our handy work to the ultimate test.


  1. It was lovely wasn't it!!??! The grass greened up right away...amazing!

  2. YAY for rain! Your plants look even happier than usual. My basil is loving it!