Friday, August 12, 2016


Here in southwestern-Ohio, the high temp again exceeded 90˚F yesterday, as it did the day before and the day before that, ad infinitum. Global warming? Cosmic payback for building one too many strip malls or freeways? 

I dunno. Maybe it's always been that hot between April and October. My memory banks are just too over-cooked to trust. Remembering an occasional cooler stretch during July and August could be a mere fantasy on my part, an illusion based on wishful thinking.

I won't even mention the muggy, smothering humidity! Let's just say those fancy new high-tech moisture-wicking fabrics have met their match!

Nope. The only meaningful information—the only answer we wring-us-out-like-a-washrag suffers care about—is this: Is summer is almost over?

YUP! I have been to the field and witnessed with my own sweat-stung eyes. THE IRONWEED IS BLOOMING! And anyone who knows anything about the seasonal passage can tell you—when the ironweed comes into bloom, summer's days are numbered. 

Ironweed doesn't lie and it's never wrong. The clock is ticking. The countdown has begun. Here in Buckeyeland the ironweed is blooming!




Gail said...

Hi Grizz - three bg cheers for the ironweed - "hip-hip-hooray, hip-hip hooray, hip-hip-hooray!!" Cuz this heat and humidity is horrid - and for me, my MS self has NO tolerance for it. I stay inside with the A/C. We,well, Skipp has finished painting our kitchen and hallway - it is lovely (a soft yellow) - and today, we, he, will put up the tiles above the stove and behind the sink - nice finishing touch. The tiles are brick-look with greens, gold, yellows, burgandy - very bright. Hopefully this heat spell will end soon and we can get back outside. Our butterfly bush is coming in nicely - it is a tri-color bush - purple, pink and white. We picked ripened eggplants and tomatoes from our veggie bins so tomorrow I am the fry queen to cook up the eggplants for eggplant parmesan - and a nice tomatoe w/red onion salad. Add some Italian bread and we are blessed beyond words.
Again, cheers to the promise of the ironweed - you have given me hope that this heat and humidity will soon pass :-)
Happy weekend to you and your LadyLove
Love Gail

Grizz………… said...


We had a bit of rain yesterday afternoon—just a sprinkle—and more last night, with 100% rain predicted for today, tomorrow, and Tuesday, so maybe this month-long heatwave will finally be broken. It's cooler now…but the question is, will it last?

I saw your new tiles and all on FB. Looks really nice. I didn't tile when I did my new kitchen sink wall—put in a waterproof panel and backsplash instead. Mostly to save time. I may have to rethink and redo, seeing how nice yours looks. Skipp did a great job!

Hey, one of the best things about late summer—maybe THE BEST—are all the lovely and delicious fresh veggies from the garden. Nothing sold in a grocery store ever compares. I envy you your garden. We just have no place suitable for growing veggies here—too much shade. The best we can do is put a few tomato plants in pots, which never do that well, and generally get ate by the squirrels and other critters—so we haven't done even that for several years.

Anyway, hang in there! Summer's excessive heat will sooner or later dissipate and we'll have more tolerable times. Change is afoot...the ironwood never lies!

Scott said...

Grizz: Ironweed and Joe Pye-weed are blooming here--my two sure giveaways of coming autumn. I hope they're responding to an herbal perception of impending cooler temperatures and not to just accumulated days of sunshine or shorter day length! Also, our dogwood leaves are beginning to show that very slight reddening that signals autumn before it's visible in almost all other trees. I don't know about southwestern Ohio, but I do know that the "normal" summer in southeastern Pennsylvania has 17 days of 90 degrees or more. This year, we've had 30 such days and, while today is forecast to be slightly below 90, the next three days are forecast to be 90 or above again. Mother Nature's payback for the affront of strip malls for sure--and I'm sure she's not done.

Grizz………… said...


I haven't noticed any Joe Pye weed yet in bloom around here—but that's most likely because of the places I have (or more accurately, haven't) been. I think Joe Pye always needs a bit richer, moister ground than ironweed. More fallow bottomlands and streamside meadows than sun-baked prairie. Not that this corner of Ohio is swathed in prairie. In truth, it's typically pastoral, lots of enormous sprawling farms growing beans and corn, a few rolling low hills occasionally, tracts of woods and old woodlots, plenty of streams and such. But lately, when I can get sway, I've been visiting a prairie patch up the road to photograph butterflies.

Both Joe Pye and ironweed are reliable harbingers—and I'd also like to think their message comes at least as much from some mysterious botanical perception as mere photoperiod response. I don't have a dogwood in the yard, and haven't paid attention to those along the roads when out and about—but what I do watch carefully are the Virginia creeper (the old woodbine) and the sumac, both of which are apt to show color well before anything else. The hickories also start to look a little "rusty" around their edges.

Huh…you know, I have no idea how many 90˚F days we average per summer. I ought to check that. We've cooled off to the mid-80s˚ following four days and nights of rain—well, showers, some hard, some not, and not enough total to get the river up more than a few inches…less than a foot, anyway. But 80˚ is way better than 90˚! It has even inspired me to return to my remodeling.