Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Dammitall to Hail!

Well, I was just sitting down to write a post about how wonderful the monsoon rains are. How my garden was soaking up the moisture and bursting forth with lush greenery.

And then... A rumble of thunder in the distance... then a few drops started falling... then the happy little ping ping of the rain started turning into the much more ominous thud thud of hail.

I flew out into the garden to cover the plants. I tried, really I did... but soon the thud thud turned into bang bang, and after a few particularly painful wallops I decided that discretion really was the better part of valor. So I grabbed a box from the garage to cover my head and made a dash for the back patio fearing that I might actually get knocked unconscious by a poorly timed stone.

I managed to grab a few on the way inside.

Then the bang bang started turning into crash crash. Seriously it was sooo loud, that I started fearing tornadoes and god knows what else. I herded the fe-lions into the basement.

Then the glass started breaking. I started to get seriously worried and was even contemplating whether I should be shoving everybody into carrying cases and hiding under the stairs.

Then, just as suddenly as it had started, it stopped. And within about 15 minutes the sun was shining... I think it was doing it just to mock me.

My poor little garden. I tried... really I did...

I think I might have saved a few of the tomatoes. The kale and collards & other cruciferous veggies were not so lucky.

Neither were the squash

or the chard

There might be a few green beans buried alive under the blanket

And the deck awning looks more like a giant hammock for some sort of horrible hail and leaf monster.

But the storm door certainly got the worst of it...

At least until the insurance adjusters come tell me how badly damaged the roof is....

I guess I have to look on the bright side. The whole time the hail was falling all I could think was how grateful I was that Princess was no longer living under that pine tree. And it does smell vaguely like Christmas outside with all of the broken pine branches.

My poor little xeriscape plants... and I finally had some marigolds blooming....

Well, at least I got a few pictures yesterday... And now I guess I'll have incentive to check out the farmer's market!


  1. Oh my goodness! It looks like a golf ball went through your door! I'm sorry about your plants but glad you and the cats are OK. Whoever heard of hail in July?

  2. OMG, yikes! Glad you retreated when you did! What drama... Well, maybe your garden will recover a bit. Give it some TLC when you're up to it
    Crazy weather this year.

  3. Holy crap! That's some freaky hail damage. My condolences on your garden. It's traumatic to see it slain down, especially before harvest time.

    We had a windstorm come through and flatten all my tomato plants. So far they seem to be alive, just much shorter. It's nothing compared to this though. Wow.

  4. Oh dear! We have had this kind of weather about two weeks ago. Luckely our vegetables have survived, but a lot cars in our neighbourhood... :o( Now we have two days of storm and heavy raining. But okay.. it's good for the garden.. ;o)

    Nice blog you have. I came here via Rhonda Jean. Have a nice day!

  5. Oh no!!! That stinks. I am so sorry. The hail looks like it could have done some serious damage to a lot of homes an vehicles. Definitely have the adjuster look at your roof as well. Even though we couldn't see any of the damage, most of the roofs in our town were replaced after a bad hail storm last year.

  6. Hi All,

    Thanks for the well wishes. I got out and surveyed the damage this morning. Looks like I saved 5 of the tomato plants, one cucumber, one pepper and one eggplant. Pretty much the only things that made it were plants in cages that got covered. The stuff that I covered that wasn't protected in a cage looks like you covered it with a blanket and then hit it with a baseball bat for 15 minutes...

    The neighbor a few doors down got up on the roof and said his is totaled... which means mine probably is too.

    Sooo... guess I'll be calling the insurance adjuster, that is, as soon as my phone starts working again. I think there's water in the line because all I hear is static. Somehow the DSL still works though. I'm feeling glad that I kept the cell phone on a pre-paid plan for emergencies!

    Stay tuned - more severe weather is in the forecast for this afternoon... The fun never ends!

  7. Wow. that really sucks! Makes me want to cry and I wasn't even affected!

  8. Well crap in a sack. I am so sorry! Ug. Just awful. Massive hail in July? Mean enough to break glass? Oy vey. Oy vey! :(

  9. Sorry to hear about all the damage you've experienced... I'm betting you have water in your lines... our cable was really messed up for a while and it turned out the cable box out on the street was full of water... once it was dried out, it worked fine. Good luck!

  10. OK... now two of you have commented that it's strange to get hail in July... which makes me wonder what time of year it hails where you are? Because here in Denver July is prime hail season. Just curious...

    Kim - CatMan had the same diagnosis, and I'm pretty sure you are both correct. Apparently the squirrels chew on the lines and then we get a big storm and water gets in... so every few years I have to whine at them and they send somebody out to replace the chewed section of cable. In fact, as I write a nice young fellow is out there looking at it (a nice young fellow who was supposed to arrive this AFTERNOON, not at 8:30 in the bloody morning... not that I'm complaining...)

  11. Oh god. I'm so sorry to hear that! Hope the foliage recovers quickly.

  12. In the 10 years I've lived in SoCal, I have experienced hail once. I think it was in January. I can't remember when the hail storms would hit in MO, because the weather was some form of crappy 99.9% of the time.

    But I do remember freaking out once when I was in Denver in July and there was freezing rain! I thought it was some freak episode. Who knew?

  13. I fear summer hail is par for the course here. We get this monsoon moisture every summer that comes up from the south and when it hits the hot air it just does all sorts of bizarre and destructive things.

    One summer when I was in high school we had softball sized hail. That was scary! I was doing temp work for an insurance company that summer taking hail claims over the phone. The stories were absolutely horrendous. The one that sticks with me is the folks who had a big picture window... the hail came in at an angle and smashed the window, it then continued to coming through the broken window smashing glass shards into the couch and the carpeting. Sorta makes my damage look like nothin'!

  14. That is too sad-my husband is the gardener in our family and I just know that he would most certainly have cried. What a bummer. I hope you have a spectacular harvest next year to make up for it!

  15. I'm grateful YOU have insurance! That hail was hardcore! It always seems to start and finish abruptly. In Queensland hail damage is pretty much standard in all car and property insurances, our weather gets wild and wooly on a moment's notice.
    Your damage was hectic, I would be devastated but you seemed to take it in your stride.

    1. Well, I was counting my blessings a few weeks ago when we got another round of severe weather. My house got spared this time, but only by about 10 blocks. I saw reports on the news where they had hail 10 inches deep, and the mailman was telling me that a few blocks away all the leaves were stripped from the trees and everything was just decimated.

      On the bright side, it means that I never have to worry about paying to have a roof replaced because you can pretty much count on hail taking it out every 10-15 years or so!

  16. aahahaha that's a huge bright side! Reminds me of when I had made the decision to sell my car to buy a 4x4 so I could drive around Australia. I thought how annoying it would be to have to try to sell it and then be without a car while I looked for one. It ended up being written off in a collision (still here to tell the tale) and less than a fortnight later I had a cheque for more than it would have sold for from the insurance company (thank goodness I went agreed amount not market value!) and trotted off to buy a car!
    EASY AS! And only minor injuries. Totally worth it. (promise it wasn't planned, and it wasn't my fault).


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