This afternoon, it is supposed to reach 99 degrees for a high, which is a normal temperature in this area for this time of the year. Even low 100s are normal. Which is quite a break from last week where we sustained several days in temperatures that ranged between 106 to 114 degrees.
There is tremendous leaf fall in my backyard and the walnuts are falling off of my black walnut tree. I have made sugar syrup to feed my bees, and will be opening the hive bodies to insert pollen patties, so that our bees will have an adequate protein source as well.
I don't feel like this has sunk into the heads of other family members. How much worse this sort of drought issue might get, and that this could keep happening year after year.
If I had more cash on hand, I would have built a hoop house by now and invested in a roll of shade cloth. If I had more cash I would have solar arrays on my property and a wind turbin. If I had the cash I would have more energy saving products and alternatives to mitigate cost and effect on the environment.
But like many Americans I am priced out of doing much more than recycling and reusing. As food prices and energy prices rise, I wonder what the future will hold for us.
One of my earlier diaries covered this issue. This notion that people think they are going to live off the land. They cannot seem to make the connections in their brain between climate change and crop failure, even on a small garden plot level.
On a more positive note, we hung 3 new hummingbird feeders outside. We have seen numerous black chinned hummingbirds. I have never seen that species here before. Normally all we see are the ruby throats. Perhaps they just didn't visit our feeders until this year.
So we hung extra feeders bringing the total to 4 feeders. We make an extra batch of feed when we make bee sugar syrup. The recipes are different proportions, but the same ingredients.
We also bought more bird feed to put in our conventional bird feeder. Still no bird bath though. I think what I will do is buy another Chicken waterer for starters. At least that will provide a clean source of water. You can see what they look like here. [This link does not constitute an endorsement]
More and more trees are dying on the roadsides. The heat from the pavement I believe is causing the situation to be worse for road side plants and trees. It heats the ground and the air up and probably causes a higher evaporation rate of these little creeks that used to run through this area. Most are dry or only contain some stagnant pools. We have driven most of this and the surrounding areas to observe the water levels. They are very low. The Drought Report Monitor has raised the drought condition from severe to Extreme in much of Oklahoma. Some areas are now classified as Exceptional.
This is hard to stomach as I loose yet more fruit trees. I cannot afford to keep replacing them. I may end up doing just that with prickley pears. You can eat those fruit too and they bloom for the bees.
I am hoping to buy an aerator system for my septic tank soon, so I can use that like gray water for my trees. More money that we have to spend. Basically this uses bacteria and oxygen to clear the black water and turn it into gray water.
I am trying to think of a way to connect my washing machine to a tank and use that to create a replica of Burnt Out's bird bath/fountain. I think it would require two tanks though. I have to run through the chemistry of this first. I don't want the birds bathing in anything that might harm them.
To all your Drought Survivors out there--Keep On Keeping On.
And if you are affected by the drought I strongly encourage you to send a report to the Drought Monitor. They also accept photographs with your reports.