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My Garden Diary

January and February 2019

Copyright © 2019 by David E. Ross

Many years ago, when I first started my Web site, I created an online diary of my gardening activities and observations. However, with work and the commute from Hell, I was often so tired I had to choose between maintaining my garden and maintaining my diary. Sometimes, I did neither. In 1998, I stopped my diary and removed the pages from my Web site. 7

Now I am retired. I am well-rested and have plenty of time to both garden and maintain a diary. This diary is primarily for my own benefit, so that I can look back upon what I did and when. But I thought others might also be interested, so here it is.

Also see What's Blooming in My Garden Now?


January-February 2013
March-April 2013
May-June 2013
July-August 2013
September-October 2013
November-December 2013
January-February 2014
March-April 2014
May-June 2014
July-August 2014
September-October 2014
November-December 2014
January-February 2015
March-April 2015
May-June 2015
July-August 2015
September-October 2015
November-December 2015
January-February 2016
March-April 2016
May-June 2016
July-August 2016
September-October 2016
November-December 2016
January-February 2017
March-April 2017
May-June 2017
July-August 2017
September-October 2017
November-December 2017
January-February 2018
March-April 2018
May-June 2018
July-August 2018
September-October 2018
November-December 2018

Diary entries for 2004 through 2012

Entries below are in reverse order (latest at the top). Daily, I might stoop to pull a weed or use a hose to water some potted plants; however, I don't consider those significant gardening activities. Thus, you will not see daily entries. Also, I might accumulate a few entries before updating this page on the Web.

When plants have well-known common names, their scientific names are given only the first time they appear on this page (entry closest to the bottom). There, the common name is in bold or appears as a link to another Web page.

Dates without years refer to other entries in the same year as the entry in which they appear — including entries on prior pages for the same year — unless a different year is given.

Date and Weather Observations and Activities
13 January

Cloudy, occasional hazy sun, and cold

Temp: 47-54
Winter chill: 35.0 hours
Humidity: 62%
Wind: 4-22

Pruned the 'Arizona' and 'Sunsprite' roses in back. While I did this, I also cleared the pink clover (Persicaria capitata) ground cover away from the base of each.

Rain —
This rain-year: 6.29
Week: 2.48

11 January

Thin, wispy clouds; mostly sunny, sometimes hazy; cold

Temp: 49-59
Winter chill: 23.0 hours
Humidity: 24%
Wind: 0-15

Rain —
This rain-year: 3.81
Days since last: 10
Week: 2.12

Raked leaves from the back lawn two days ago. This was an important task because an accumulation of leaves on the lawn smothers the grass and causes dead patches. Since the green, garden-waste bin was full, I started making mounds of leaves on the main patio and on the paths around the lawn.

Today, raked more leaves from the back lawn. Friday (today) is trash-collection day with the green bin emptied early in the morning. This time, I was able to put the newly raked leaves in the bin. However, I did not move the mounds from two days ago into the bin because I want to leave room for the results of pruning the peach tree and roses.

Finished pruning the peach tree. I will not have to use a ladder to pick peaches, leaving the tree low and wide.

8 January

Clear, sunny, and cool

Temp: 49-64
Winter chill: 33.0 hours
Humidity: 51%
Wind: 3-19

Pruning the roses has begun at the public garden where I am a docent. I was able to get two nice cuttings of 'Simply Marvelous', which I potted up in an attempt to root them and replace the rooted cutting that died (30 Dec 2018).

Rain —
This rain-year: 3.81
Week: 1.35

4 January

Clear, sunny, and cool

Temp: 52-63
Winter chill: 23.0 hours
Humidity: 16%
Wind: 1-10

Pruned another limb of the peach tree. I would have pruned a second limb, but the garden waste bin is quite full. (It will be emptied by the county tomorrow.)

Rain —
This rain-year: 3.81
Days since last: 29

2 January

Clear, sunny, and cold

Temp: 44-57
Winter chill: 23.0 hours
Humidity: 13%
Wind: 0-27

Pruned two more major limbs of the peach tree (Prunus persica 'Santa Barbara', 31 Dec 2018). A conventional rule for pruning peaches is to remove 2/3 of the new wood that grew during the past summer. Pruning this one is taking much more effort than the prior peach trees. This one seems to be far more vigorous. It grew significantly last year despite the minimal winter chill in the 2017-2018 winter.

Rain —
This rain-year: 3.81
Days since last: 27

Weather data are from the Cheeseboro (CHE) weather station, about 2 miles ENE of my house.

The high temperature (°F) is daytime for the indicated date; the low temperature (°F) is for the previous night.

Winter chill is the cumulative hours of temperatures at or below 45°F from 1 November through 31 March. It is reported during that period and through April.

The relative humidity is at noon. (In my garden, it is likely higher than reported, a result of regular irrigation.)

Wind speeds (mph) are average (not peak) low and high, midnight to midnight (subject to later correction for diary entries posted before the end of the day). I also indicate peak wind gusts parenthetically when they are significantly high.

Rain is in inches. Rain-year is the cumulative amount of rainfall from 1 October until 30 September of the following year (our "rain-year"). Week is the cumulative amount of measurable rainfall from noon seven days ago until noon of the indicated date. If no measurable rain fell in that period, Days since last is reported.

Characterization of the weather (e.g., Clear, sunny, and warm) is purely subjective; for example, "warm" might occur with higher temperatures than "hot" if the former occurs with lower humidity and more breezes than the latter. Also, a day that would normally be characterized as "mild" might instead be "warm" if the immediately previous days were quite cold. Finally, such characterization reflects when I was actually outside and gardening and ignores changes that occur while I am inside.

The signature line I use when writing messages about my garden includes the following:

Climate: California Mediterranean
Sunset Zone: 21 -- interior Santa Monica Mountains with some ocean influence (USDA 10a, very close to Sunset Zone 19)
See also My Climate.
November-December 2018
September-October 2018
July-August 2018
May-June 2018
March-April 2018
January-February 2018
November-December 2017
September-October 2017
July-August 2017
May-June 2017
March-April 2017
January-February 2017
November-December 2016
September-October 2016
July-August 2016
May-June 2016
March-April 2016
January-February 2016
November-December 2015
September-October 2015
July-August 2015
May-June 2015
March-April 2015
January-February 2015
November-December 2014
September-October 2014
July-August 2014
May-June 2014
March-April 2014
January-February 2014
November-December 2013
September-October 2013
July-August 2013
May-June 2013
March-April 2013
January-February 2013

Diary entries for 2004 through 2012


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