Unseen Gusts and Rain

Today there are overflowing puddles and bird baths and even the grass has lost its crispy texture, but the garden is changed.  In our absence yesterday a heavy wind and rain storm passed through. Neighbors said it was fierce and significant, but everyone was surprised to see the trees down.

Crape Myrtle at Front Walk

Returning to the neighborhood, first I saw a next-door neighbor’s small oak tree had almost broken in half, the top had just folded over toward the ground. Just beyond at our house, an almost-blooming Crape Myrtle had snapped at the base and was lying in the street.  Its twin stood sturdy and strong, but missing its partner at the front walk.

One of a pair of Crape Mytles snapped at the base during a storm.

Not having seen the storm ourselves it was difficult to imagine what in the world had happened. The house seemed fine and was.

Of course I was curious how the garden had fared.

Ahh, a pine tree! We do not own any, having learned our lesson many years ago about living under pine trees. They fall.  They lose their tops. I did not need the reminder, but here it was and sure enough pine trees do still lose their tops! And even if a pine tree belongs to the back yard neighbors, a pine tree’s broken top can suddenly become one’s own problem.

Top of Loblolly Pine Landed Inside The Garden

Amazingly the pine fell inside our fence, rather than crashing down onto it, so the fence is not damaged. The meditation circle was filled with pine cones and a few small branches, but is otherwise unscathed. Early morning cleanup revealed a broken ‘Chuck Hayes’ Gardenia, a crushed Buddleja, a flattened Gaura and a few missing perennials, but mostly the garden was spared. It still looks a bit bruised though and will take some time to recover it dignity.

It is too soon to see this as an opportunity to redesign, but eventually it will work that way.

After Cleanup From The Storm

18 thoughts on “Unseen Gusts and Rain

  1. Linda

    Dear me, neighbor. I was here during the storm. My cat and I took refuge in the coat closet for some of it. I live next door to tall pines that I worry about during storms. Sorry about your Crepe Myrtle, such a pretty sentinel on your walkway but I know you’ll find a new solution. Glad there was no other real damage.

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks Linda. If you were driven to the closet it must really have been a scary storm. We were inside not many miles away and did think we had heard thunder one time. Such a fluke for the trees to be hit.

  2. P&B

    Sorry about your garden. Two of our birch trees were down when the October snow storm hit last year (one night storm from nowhere). We were heartbroken, but, as you put it, it is “an opportunity to redesign”. Looking forward to see your new design.

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks! It’s going to take a while to get excited about redoing that area, but it will happen. A shame to lose your birches, such very nice trees. Take care.

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks, I hope so too. The crape myrtles were not the color I would have chosen myself, but they were fine. Now I hope to find that color again. Have a good day.

  3. Cathy

    Sounds like you were relatively lucky that no “serious” damage occurred, but I know how sad it is when even a couple of plants suffer in a storm. Start plans for new plants soon!

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Yes, no structural damage–mostly surprise. There have been severe storms and long-lasting power outages across the US related to this hot summer, so in the larger scheme of things this is relatively minor damage. It’s too hot to do much gardening right now, but maybe by fall I can have some plans. Enjoy your day!

  4. sandy

    I have learned the pine lesson, too. They are lovely–in the fields and woods.
    Glad you fared as well as you did.

  5. mountainmaemountainmae.wordpress.com

    The storm was impressive here – we had wind and hail. Many downed trees but none were mine this time. It must have been shocking to come home to a redesigned yard- I’m glad nothing more was damaged. Perhaps the pine cones have been yearning to get to the meditation circle.

  6. greenbenchramblings

    Sorry about the damage but as you say there are new opportunities. Kew garden in the south of the UK lost thousands of trees a while ago and immediately started to plan new plantings as a sort of therapy. Some of their plant collectors went on journeys around the world following in the footsteps of the great plant collectors and re-discovered plants they had lost in the storm and lots of new ones.

  7. Christina

    How shocking, nature doing its thing! I’m glad there was no structural damage, that’s the most important thing. You were so lucky the pine didn’t damage the fence. Christina

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks. Yes, nature is multi-faceted. I’m so glad the fence was ok–it was an ordeal getting it installed last year. Take care.

  8. lindachilton

    sorry to read of the storm,pbm.I shall not complain too much about our west wind again. I hope your garden recovers well-just the opportunity for those heleniums!

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks Linda! I’m always intrigued when you mention the west wind and intend to study up on that phenomenon. I’ll keep heleniums in mind!


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