The scurs were steamrolled by the Monday-Tuesday temperatures. Of course so was almost everyone else who was forecasting the weather or heaven forbid trying to work in it. Temperatures soared to the century mark on area bank thermometers, car thermometers and our official Edna thermometer. Will we see a return to more moderate temperatures? Starting Wednesday, partly cloudy with a slight chance of a shower or thunderstorm. Highs near 85 and lows of 50 – 55. Partly cloudy Thursday and cooler with highs near 70 and lows of 50 – 55. Partly cloudy Friday with a good chance of a shower or thunderstorm by evening. Highs near 70 and lows of 55. Mostly cloudy Saturday with a good chance of showers. Highs around 70 and lows of 50 – 55. Sunday, partly cloudy with a slight chance of a shower. Highs around 75 and lows near 60. Mostly cloudy on Monday with a slight chance of showers. Highs around 80 and lows of 55 – 60. Mostly cloudy again on Tuesday with a good chance of showers and thunderstorms. Highs of 70 and lows of 55 – 60. The normal high for June 12 is 80 and the normal low is 55. The sun rises at 5:31 a.m. on the 10th and will continue doing so until June 22nd, the day after the summer solstice. The scurs will be setting their alarm clocks so they can enjoy the best part of the day the only way they know how: By rolling over and going back to sleep.
Next Wednesday ushers in the Full Moon for the month and since those in the country don’t get their paper until Thursday, we’ll cover it this week. It is nearly unanimous between the Farmer’s Almanac, the Ojibwe and the Sioux: This Full Moon is known as the Full Strawberry Moon and rightfully so. While perhaps slightly behind this year, area strawberries are about to come online in full force. This moon is also known as the Moon When Bread Gets Moldy Fast at the ranch.
What a dynamic week for area crops! Corn fields actually look like they mean business following a week of warm temperatures and some much needed sunshine. Many area fields were starting to sport a fully exposed 4th collar and knee high won’t be long. Soybeans are progressing as well although not as rapidly as the corn. The few pea fields in the area looked good last week although it will be interesting to see how they behave following the extreme heat we saw on Monday and Tuesday. Forage harvest was in full swing with the warm dry weekend and many and area hayfield was baled or chopped. Still tough to beat the smell of curing hay as it wafts in the window at night.
The garden is coming along finally. This past Sunday witnessed the planting of the vine crops. They were watered in well but nothing prepares them for 100 degree heat with strong breezes. There are still some cukes and one zucchini to plant. That one plant is usually enough to supply most of a five-county area. Oh well the sheep like them. The bigger the better.
As mentioned while the sun is rising at 5:30 a.m. the birds are rising about 4:30 a.m. Starting with the robins, followed closely by the chipping sparrows who seem to wake up the wrens, the common yellowthroats, tree and barn swallows, the mourning doves, the orioles, a few goldfinches and an occasional blue jay. It gets loud for about 45 minutes and then before sunrise they must be feeding their young or going back to sleep. There were some newcomers noted this past week at the ranch including a bobolink, a dickcissel, and a warbling vireo. There continues to be a pine siskin at the feeder making one wonder if it plans on taking up residence or just appreciates the free breakfast included in the price of the lodging. A gray catbird apparently liked the length of the headed out bluegrass I’d munched off with the weedeater and was busily stuffing its mouth. It didn’t take long to figure out it was heading into the thick brush on the edge of the yard where it could build a well concealed nest.
Ruby had a newcomer this past week as well. In addition to her squirrel and the grackles she detests, we were exposed to some of the fiercest growling one morning we had ever heard from her. She stood at her spot in front of the sliding glass door and just trembled as something had her full attention. Once we got there to see what the commotion was about, a small chipmunk was on the porch taunting her as it scampered back and forth. This is the first one we’ve ever seen at the ranch. Once it saw me it took off and where it wound up I wasn’t certain. The next day however there was a hole with some freshly shelled sunflower seeds outside of it not far from where Chippy had been seen. Luckily for the chipmunk, Ruby is more of a chaser and not a catcher. She is however a digger so that situation will need to be monitored carefully.
See you next week…real good then.