Much Needed Moisture


Here on the Front Range of Colorado, we’re in our second day of a snowstorm that’s bringing much needed moisture—the farmers’ mantra–to our soil and water supply. Even the Huffington Post ran an AP story on our snowstorm, reporting the rise in our snowpack to 77% of normal. That might not sound like good news, but it’s better than it was a week ago. And when I checked the National Resource Conservation Service’s snowpack report this morning, I found even better news: statewide snowpack is 203% of last year (154% for our water basin) when we suffered drought and wildfires. The snow may be below normal but any improvement over last year is welcome.

April is a busy time of year for getting vegetables seeded and transplanted, work now delayed by the snow. Two Saturdays ago, we transplanted 7000 onion and leek starts into new beds. With the fields still moist from the smaller snows that followed, we haven’t quite finished that planting. But with a snow day, we can catch up on a few chores that we might not have gotten to otherwise. This morning, John’s repairing our solar lawn mower and I knit a long swatch in assorted yarns for an upcoming public art event (more on that in May). Best of all, this April storm has afforded us time to try our friend Deirdre’s delicious sponge bread, something we’ve been wanting to do for months. Deirdre was right: it’s easy and delicious. I’m glad to have a snow day to find that out.

The snow may not be convenient right now, especially for our loved ones who have to get to work, but we’ll be happy for the snow this summer when there’s water for the fields, and the mountains, we hope, won’t run the risk of wildfire like last summer. A lot will depend on summer heat and wise water use. But for now, the clouds have issued us a reprieve. So here’s a few pics of what “much needed moisture” looks like at Stonebridge.

Snow drifting between our back mudroom and the bunkhouse. Our farmmate Joe tried to sweep a path and broke the broom!

Snow drifting between our back mudroom and the bunkhouse. Our farmmate Joe tried to sweep a path and broke the broom!

The stone bridge in snow

The stone bridge in snow

Typical for a spring snow, the ditch isn't frozen.

Typical for a spring snow, the ditch isn’t frozen

John outside the shop

John outside the shop in the tractor barn where he’s fixing the mower

The curl of snow around the roof of the Sunflower Room porch

The curl of snow around the roof of the Sunflower Room porch

And there's more on the way

And there’s more on the way


Filed under ecobiography, sustainable agriculture

9 responses to “Much Needed Moisture

  1. Moisture! Always a relief. And a solar lawn mower. Sounds very cool. Send a pic of John mowing a solar lawn, I’d like to see it! (I crack myself up)

  2. Rachel Martin

    Wowzerz! What beautiful pictures and lovely snow! I hope that you’re staying snug and warm.

  3. Amen for the spring snow. I grew up there on the front range and remember a May 22 snow storm – it was my graduation.

    • That was a graduation to remember! Our CSA starts the second Saturday in May and, in 22 years, we’ve had to cancel opening day twice for snow. It’s still snowing today but light, “corn pollen” snow, and the birds are singing. Must be spring!

  4. We have almost 17 hours of daylight already. We will gain an hour each week until the sun will rein supreme for 24 hrs. Just think of all the food you could grow if the snow here would melt. There is talk about a greenhouse for the elementary school. That would be really neat. See you in about a month.

  5. Thank you. Oh My, I cannot believe that snow. Glad it will help with the drought.

    Happy Day Mary

  6. johnmmartin

    Maybe a little more tonight and the spinach will be snug under that blanket.

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