Garden Diary - August 2009

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Sunday / Monday, 2nd & 3rd August, 2009
Summer Storm II

We had a couple of friends over for dinner on Saturday evening, a pleasant time with drinks and appetizers out on the deck, and then dinner indoors. By the time John and Carol had departed and I got the kitchen somewhat tidied up it was 11:30 p.m. and time for bed. Awakening in the night I heard rain on the skylights. Turned over, snuggled under the covers and went back to sleep. When we did get up the next morning there was a respectable 1.1 inches of rain in the gauge. So Paul didn't go outdoors to cut firewood, nor did I weed. I called Dick Nagy to see about getting some peaches. Come about lunchtime, he said. O.K., can do.

Rain started again around 11:30 a.m., quite heavy. "If it keeps raining this hard," said Paul, "I'll drive you." What a sweetheart. It did keep raining con brio for about half an hour, finally easing off about noon. We had lunch, and started off to get our peaches. Hmmm. There was water dashing down the path to the Forest Deck, and tunneling at the edge of the driveway.

It's hydraulic drilling. The water cuts through the soil. Since the western portion of the road
is unpaved and pot-holed, we prudently decided to head east, and stay on the pavement.

copyright Paul Glattstein 2009

Of course, it can still flood over pavement. The rain came down, 2.80 inches in 30 minutes.
Boyden's bridge became a dam. The water in the Nishisackawick Creek poured over
the bridge while the up-stream side collected pieces of telephone poles plus logs,
branches, and other debris, creating even more of a damming effect. Yikes!
The road itself is buckling in places.

copyright Paul Glattstein 2009

Flowing like chocolate milk with a froth of whitecaps from the turbulence.

copyright Paul Glattstein 2009


The sheep pasture flooded. That was on Sunday.

On Monday it was just a soggy mess, with trash caught in the fences.


This is where there is a culvert under the road, on Sunday.
I'm standing in the road looking upstream at my sometimes flowing,
sometimes dry (but not now!) intermittent drainage creek.

This is the culvert from the upstream side, on Monday. Trust me, it's under there. Somewhere.

It's not a beaver dam, somewhere on the Nishisackawick. It's all sorts of
branches and stuff caught up on a downed tree. The forces are incredible.

See the line of trees? They're growing on the edge of the Nishisackawick
which has spread over its riparian banks and flooded this meadow.

Still minor compared to the seemingly sluggish flow of the majestic Delaware River,
until, that is, I time some of the debris flowing under the bridge span. It is moving!


Remember Sunday's hydraulic drilling? Take a look on Monday.
Here's the excavation that it left behind. The darker upper portion
is the asphalt, with about 7 1/2 inches of empty space beneath it.

Even worse the water apparently ran under the center of the driveway
for about 120 feet, hydraulic drilling as it went. Storm ended, water
seeped into the ground, and now there's a cavity. Air is not a good
base layer for a driveway. Result, we have sink holes. Impressive, and

copyright Paul Glattstein 2009

something the paving contractor who installed the driveway, who came
on Monday to give a bid for the repair, had never seen before.
In Marty's experience it's the edges where driveways wash out.


So here you have it, earthworms flushed out in the deluge,
making tracks in the fine silt settling out of the flood waters.
I wonder, did Noah have earthworms in the Ark?

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