Monday, October 19, 2009

After the Storm

Monday was stormy where the rain gauge in our backyard registered 6 inches.  That was enough water to saturate the ground (all air spaces in the soil is replaced with water) making the soil very loose.  There was more rain than the soil can hold resulting in excessive erosion.  Not only that the winds were gusty at a speed of 55mph.  This combinanation of rain and wind knocked down a lot of trees, broke branches and forced the leaves off some trees even before they could show their beautiful colors.

Clean Up the Yard  It is a good idea to clean the yard as soon as possible after the storm.  Aside from aesthetic reasons, this will help eliminate breeding places for garden pests such as snails and slugs.
 Slugs and snails lay their eggs in dark and damp soil such as under those layers of plant debris and of rocks. They feed on living or decaying plant material. Their eggs take from 2 months to 2 years to become adult slugs and snails.  Thick ground covers are ideal hiding and breeding places for slugs and snails.  In my garden their favorite places to hide are under the boxwood plants.  Clearing the base of the hedges and collecting the dead leaves that have collected there make this an unfavorable place for them.  

Drain every container that has collected water.  In my yard there pots and containers that collect water whenever it rains.  If left undrained, these will become breeding places for mosquitos.  Sometimes part of our gutter does not drain properly and this can become a perfect place for mosquitos to lay their eggs if the water remains there for at least one week.  Checking the gutters after the storm is indeed a good thing to do after the storm. 

Prune Trees  Make clean cuts where the branches have been broken.  This will allow the trees to heal faster.

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