Bright side to drought? Write a song about it — Jan. 29, 2015

By Heather Hacking

Is there a bright side to drought?

Not really. However, let’s pretend for a minute that the lack of water is worthy of praise.

Wow, what beautiful, rain-free weather we’ve been having.

Wouldn’t this be ideal weather for growing winter vegetables?

Even if we can’t tend to winter vegetables, the weather for pulling weeds is excellent.
If this drought keeps going, we can continue to pull weeds every weekend. By the time the Easter Bunny arrives, our yards could be entirely weed-free.

Think about how much money we’re saving on windshield wiper replacements.

If you gauged the season by the temperature, we’re enjoying an early spring. Many plants are flowering early, including the heavenly-scented Daphne odora, which normally doesn’t bloom until Valentines Day.

On weekends we forget about gardening by enjoying nature.

Recent adventures included the trails by the Oroville diversion pool and the wildlife trail at Butte College.

Friends joined me and my beau as we huffed it up the rim trail, scooted on our butts down Monkey Face and meandered around Horseshoe Lake.

Normally we would be a mud-mess after these outdoor adventures. Hurray for drought.

There are already enough songs about rain. I think people should write more songs about dry weather.

Were dry times the inspiration for “A Horse With No Name?”

How about “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?”

Every month Sunset Magazine creates a a to-do list. For January,, suggestions include shopping for azaleas and camellias. Another task on the list is shopping for medium-sized maple trees. Thanks Sunset. I’ll stop by your place in Menlo Park and use your spigot to fill up my water tanker.

On second thought, those garden magazine folks are realists. If you’re really a gardener, you’re going to plant something.

Despite drought, I plan to buy a fig tree and torture it in a pot until the rains return.

If I’m feeling really defiant, I’ll also plant a few tomato plants by seed.

Who knows, we might have an amazingly ample April and the wells in Chico will turn artesian.

I save the plastic food containers with the flip-top lids. These make the perfect poor-woman’s greenhouse. Simply poke some holes in the bottom and the soil stays moist.

If you have a window with some good light, just place the containers in the sun, then pull them to the middle of the living room at night when the windowsill turns cold.

I’m growing cat grass right now and I won’t apologize.

When the new kitty arrived, my coworker Laura gave me the cat grass seeds. It would be rude not to plant them.
Maybe I’ll water the plants by dipping a ladle into my toilet.

I need to watch myself, however, because you never know what actions I’ll be able to justify. Next thing you know I’ll be planting a long row of exotic, water-hogging plants like hibiscus and bananas.

According to Natiional Geographic’s website,, other moisture-hogs include impatiens and annuals with shallow roots.

Other contacts, @HeatherHacking on Twitter and Facebook.

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