Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Rain: Due to the time lag between stuff happening and me blogging about it, it was only on 14th June that I told you how we’d been drowning in excess rainfall in the first part of the year … I may have spoken too soon. In June, we should have had 42 mm (1.6 inches) of rain, we actually had 27 mm (just over an inch). Hey, you say, what’s the problem, the grounds already soggy, a little less rain might actually help. Well, the raw figures aren’t the whole story, by any means. If you’re using rainfall to work out such things as how big your rainwater catchment tanks should be, you’ll also need to know about rain gaps. We might have had 27 mm in a month but that included 20 mm during one shower on one day and a rain gap of 20 days. We’ve still got a bit left in the water cubes for the veggies but we’re now using tap water for the animals.

It rained today, hooray!

Kristen’s excellent blog entry for 16th June) introduced me to Geoff Lawton and his great little flash video on Greening the [Jordanian] Desert. It really speaks for itself, so I’ll let it do just that.

Another of our favourite blogs is that of Nick and Kirsten in Oz. They’d written nothing since March and we wondered what was happening. Lucky buggers (I think that’s an Australian term of endearment) they’ve been running courses at their Milkwood plot with Geoff himself and another water landscaping expert, Darren Doherty

So impressed were we by Geoff’s little video, that we ordered his DVD Harvesting Water – The Permaculture Way. It’s well made and really inspirational. After watching it this evening–with swales cut along the contour in mind–we went out to cast an eye over our field with the biggest slope. When I got back in, I emailed Darren to see if he was planning to run any courses in Europe anytime soon. He says he is thinking about doing a course in either Spain, England or Ireland next year. Please post a comment if you’re based in Europe and are interested in his course and I’ll let him know, to try and persuade him; flying one expert here from Australia is definitely more carbon-friendly than us all trouping over there!