What ever happened to summer? / by Gwil Evans

Orange light glows through the smoke

This has been a busy summer in the garden. The annual list of summer tasks was joined by a few special projects that together consumed any time I may have had to write about Momiji-en activities.

Gwil refurbishing the lower gate

Now that we’re in the “dog days” I am beginning to reflect on what the summer of 2017 held. We knew before reading the recent news reports that this past summer was an unusual one for the weather (“Hottest August Ever!”). We have recorded more days in the 90’s than ever before from June into September. Thank goodness for a bountiful snow pack last winter as we have poured water on the garden in quantities that have not been accessed before.

A typical view on the National Weather Service site

This summer was also the second in a row dominated by smoky air from wildfires in Oregon and the Northwest. That, along with the high temperatures, has made for a summer spent indoors for refuge. Particularly disappointing was the paucity of appropriate weather to spend more time in the tea house, something we look forward to all winter!

Visibility reduced to a few hundred feet and no clarity even in the foreground

Climate change deniers can continue to refute the science but anyone who is paying attention and relating to Nature (especially on a daily basis) knows better. So, is this the new summer norm?

The haze has a mentally depressing effect as well

I never thought I’d say it, but I truly am looking forward to cleansing rains, cleaner air, and cooler days. Summer just isn’t as much fun as it used to be.