Saturday, September 4, 2010

Utter Devastation..

Hurricane Earl has left the province! And, personally, I couldn't be happier.. he certainly made his mark on our gardens.. He started up mid-morning by taking out all the sunflowers - poor things, they had just opened a few days ago! Sigh.. I went out and cut the large heads off and put them indoors in a vase before they were too damaged and windswept. You can see how pretty they are from the 'before' photo that I shot this morning as we were waiting for the storm.

By late morning, the wind was pushing the trees almost horizontal and the pole bean teepees had collapsed. Then.. not long after, the wind picked up steam and somehow my sturdy new A-frame trellises were down! One was laying flat, the other was smashed into pieces and the beans uprooted and the gourds trapped under (or possibly crushed?) beneath the tangle of vines and wood.

NO! not the gourds.. my gorgeous snake gourds (an edible Italian gourd) have been doing so well with the heat - over 4 1/2 feet long! They're long and skinny and I usually end up with 2 or 3 decent 4-foot long specimens, but this year I had over a dozen.. I went out with the hubby's drill and pretending that I'm handy, tried to unscrew the destroyed wooden trellis so that I could check to see if the gourds were ok. There was no way that I was going to be able to fix the trellis and get the gourds vertical again, but I was hoping to remove all the wood and if the vines weren't too damaged, they could at least sprawl along the soil.. I was fairly successful (surprisingly!), but I'm not done yet, and with the amount of wood and leaves and debris, I'm still not sure if my biggest gourd is broken or not..

Just this morning, this garden was a well organized patch of paradise.. now, it's a wreck of debris, damaged leaves and broken wood..

Anyhow.. on a lighter note, here's another 'before' photo of one of my largest sunflowers.. it was over 9 feet tall this morning and stood guard at the entry to the upper kitchen garden.. simply gorgeous..

The good news is that we only had one broken tree and we all weathered the storm just fine - even with no computers, tv, or other gadgets! We pulled out the monopoly board and had some family fun.. plus we played a game of soccer outside during the peak of the storm.. wet, but fun! (and safe - no big trees nearby!)

Now, the work begins.. clearing out the dead and damaged veggies and sticking in more crops for winter..

Happy Gardening!

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