March 27, 2006
Before heading out to the store to purchase seeds to grow that perfect garden think about the weather.
Five inches of rain is all that has been recorded since January 1, putting our total rainfall deficit at about six inches. While we aren't in a drought just yet, we are close to drought conditions.
"So far it really hasn't affected anything. We have a good ample supply of moisture down in the soil. So as long as we get back into a more regular rainfall pattern through the rest of the spring and into the summer, we should be in good shape,” explained Norm Carlson, Operating Manager of SNOWS.
Our temperatures seem to be on a roller coaster ride, in the 80s one day and the 40s the next, and people should be aware of this when planting.
"That's why we tell people to really wait till the end of April to start planting because it's invariable that we do have a late frost toward the latter part of April," explained Carlson. "If you start too early with things, the frost can damage it."
Protecting plants from frost is tedious but important.
"The best thing that you can do is to go out there and throw a sheet or a blanket over it or even just a plastic pot or milk jug that has the bottom cut out of it. Just throw that over it for the night," said Carlson.
Although the planting season has been dry through the first part of the year, Norm gives us good reason why we shouldn't give up on planting just yet.
"The biggest thing to be concerned about is if you’re going to be doing a lot of spring planting, until we do get into some more regular rainfall, you want to be careful about your watering. Make sure you're out there providing what Mother Nature isn't for right now," he explained.
March might end as one of the driest on record, but with most of the planting starting in April, we still can hope that a few April showers will bring a few more May flowers.