Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Roll on autumn!

Roll on autumn...that's what I say!!! We are having our second heatwave this month and today the temperature rose to 38 degrees Celsius. At least it wasn't 39.5 like it was a couple of weeks ago. I know that our southern states have had temps in the mid 40s and honestly, I really don't know how they survived. It is hard to believe that a few months ago I was complaining about the constant foggy weather in one of my first blog posts last June.

Little did I know what we had in store this summer.
Fortunately I was able to sit in air-conditioned comfort for a few hours this morning while I took a family member to the doctor's surgery. As we don't have air conditioning in our home because it wasn't really needed years ago when we enjoyed mild temperatures in summer, I really appreciated being able to escape from the oppressive heat for a while.
Today I checked the rockmelons around midday to see how they were coping and the leaves were starting to burn so I gave them a little water in the hope that they would survive the day. My husband had saved some seeds from a rockmelon he ate a little while back and, as he does, he saved some seeds and dried them before sticking them in the ground to see if they would grow. We now have at least five rockmelons growing so hopefully they will cope with another day of heat tomorrow before we go back to normal summer temperatures again on Thursday.
I lived in Melbourne for a few years when I was young and I got quite a shock during the first summer I was there as all the windows and curtains would be closed and the blinds pulled down to keep the homes cool when the 'north wind' was blowing. As a Queenslander who had never been aware of this phenomenon before, I hated the darkness and the feeling of being 'shut in' that this created and was quite pleased when I returned to my home state and this little area on the Darling Downs where a summer's day over 30 degrees Celsius was a rarity.  Unfortunately it is becoming more apparent that that no longer is the case so lately we have been closing the house up in an effort to keep the house cool.
Late this afternoon when the temperate was at its highest, I could stand the darkness of the house no longer and went outside to try and catch a breeze and cool down and sat underneath the pecan nut tree for a while as it provided some cool protection from the sun blazing above in the blue sky. Isolated storms were forecast so I was hoping to see some clouds forming in the sky which would bring some welcome rain.
Earlier tonight there was plenty of lightning but, once again, the storms passed us by and we only got a few sprinkles of rain. According to Weatherzone we have had 3mm of rain this month and our average for January is 108.9mm. Our driest January on record was 9.2mm in 2003 so I think we just might break a record this year. Obviously we will receive nothing like the 416mm of rain which fell in 2013 which was our wettest January on record.
Tonight on the news we were told that 65% of Queensland is now drought declared and it was sad to see the cattle that are so skinny from lack of feed. It is hard to fathom when one remembers that three years ago much of the state was flooded.
Still, life goes on and....
...the spiders keep weaving their webs and ....

the dahlias which are rarely watered, continue to amaze me with their beauty. I am sure they would appreciate some steady rain like the rest of us. Are you having any extreme weather where you live?



  1. I'm so tired of the heat I can't wait for Autumn either. I've even started thinking about my autumn garden and what I'm going to plant in it.

    BTW, love the dahlia.

    1. Damaria, the dahlias continue to amaze me in this heat as they just keep flowering. My husband is experimenting with growing different colours and some of them are stunning.

  2. Amen to that, Chel. This latest round of heat has been sapping me, I think it is the accompanying humidity, currently 81% at 7.30am. Blah. Our little weatherboard house is not airconditioned either, so we got a portable one which struggles to keep up at the moment. I shut the house up from about 8.30am until 5pm and then open up to catch the late afternoon breeze. We put a standard fan on the verandah outside our bedroom french doors to get some cool air in overnight. I think a visit to the shops might be in order today. Let's hope the forecasts for storms and a cooler day tomorrow come true.

    1. Barb, I was wondering how you were going with the move in this heat. Weatherboard houses are certainly not geared for extreme weather conditions. We did have a portable evaporative cooler once but it died and I have been tossing up whether to buy another one. They just take up so much room in this small house. We are off to the movies today to get out of the heat for a couple of hours. I hope we both get storms but no damage.

  3. I am praying for a thunderstorm today. The pumpkins will really appreciate it, and our bore pump is in for a service so we are watching the water at the moment :) I hope your rockmelons thrive better than mine did Nanna Chel :)

  4. Tanya, there were a few storms yesterday but they missed us as usual. It would be nice to get a storm with no hail or wind damage...just some good heavy rain.

  5. Too hot in the west!!! Several days during the past week the temperature indoors has hovered around 45°. Today is cooler but oh so humid! I am not sure which is the worst, heat or humidity. I guess this is an Australian summer!! While I do not particularly like spiders I am continually amazed at their talents ... gorgeous dahlia:)

  6. The heat has been terrible in the west too. At least we haven't been over 40 degrees. I don' t know how I would manage in those temps. Aussie summers are just getting too hot.

  7. Love the blog and pictures. I wonder if rock melons are what we call cantaloupes in the US?

  8. Yes they are Lori. We have just had a couple of storms so I think the rockmelons will be very happy about that.


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