Santa Fe July hailstorm and updates

Last Wednesday around lunchtime, I had a hunch that I needed to get home.  There were a few clients that I wanted to see, but I had office work too, and mostly I had a hunch. That hunch was right.  As I was starting lunch around 1:30, I hear a loud noise.  Then another.  I looked out at the patio and golf ball sized hail had landed.  Only a couple that big to be sure, but lots of smaller ones too. After a few seconds of processing that I was in an emergency, I ran outside, no hat or jacket, to my vegetable beds to get the plastic covers with wooden ends that John had rolled up next to the raised beds when the summer heat finally kicked in.  With the hail biting at me , I managed to get both on.  I can say I came out unharmed, but it was painful.  But it was worth it.  I couldn’t cover the rest, and it looks like a machine gun went to it.  I returned to the house, stood at my back door, and watched my pots get pounded.  I tried to grab the couch pillows to cover, but they got knocked off.  WHen it was over, about a quarter of the leaves and flowers that had been on the pots were on the ground.

I must say that I have spent the past few days processing this.  I have been trying to define what it feels like to hopelessly watch your garden get destroyed.  Well, to helplessly watch something so awful happen to something that you have worked so hard for is not fun, let’s put it that way.

The good news is that things are mostly in a state that they will recover from.  Most of the tomato plants that were outside of the raised beds that I got covered are down to a stalk and a few leaves.  Maybe the good news is that I followed my hunch and got home.  The second round of lettuce, the basil, the carrots and arugula were all covered.  The potatoes weren’t, so we are starting to harvest the ones under the particularly beat up leaves.  The pumpkin in front of the house looks terrible, but might make a rebound.

What do we do?  Replant a little, when possible.  Reseed a little, cut back hard.  Let things dry out.  When dry, feed with organic fish emulsion and Superthrive. Do our best, just like in life.  Sometimes I wonder if I have the heart for gardening, It  brings so much joy, but requires such a thick skin to not crash on the roller coaster of Mother Nature.  Which brings me back to the original theme of this blog:  Why do we do it?  Why do we put ourselves through this?  But every gardener know why in their hearts, so maybe now is not the time to doubt.