Buckets in search of a purpose
If you happen to be sweating it out in Alice Springs at the moment, it may seem hard to believe there’s not a lot more rain around.
In its long-range forecast the Bureau of Meteorology is punting on a merely average rainfall for Central Australia during the summer months. January, already distinguished by a torrential downpour a few days ago, is actually even less likely to hold water than February, according to their climate maps.
If it’s true – even though it doesn’t feel all that dry just at the moment – it might not be such a bad thing, from some perspectives.
While desert dwellers may love the colour of green, most of the green is brought to us by buffel grass rather than Kermit the Frog. The longer and greener it gets, the more certain that when it dries out, we will have to deal with grassfires such as those we saw in 2011. http://aliceonline.com.au/2011/08/17/we-were-ready-for-fires-government/
If the rain continues into late summer or longer, pastoralists and firefighters will have a vanishing window of opportunity from which to organise pre-emptive burns that would stop the big fires from getting out of control.
But let’s keep the gloom and doom down for the time being, at least while we’re all still wishing each other a happy new year. At the domestic level, with a little bit of bother you can get good value out of the kind of weather we’ve been having over Christmas.
Native gardens especially love rainwater, but may not get as much benefit out of it as you might imagine, with only prolonged heavy drizzle penetrating even a couple of feet.
That’s why ABC gardening talkback host Geoff Miers advises people to turn on their drip systems in the rain to help the rainwater go deeper… but there are other ways of doing it. (more…)