I woke up to this view from my front door. Snow in Tucson! This is the second time we have had snow this winter! This is the epitome of what Katherine Hayhoe termed "Global Weirding!" Maybe I'm exaggerating a bit. But it is weird. It is rare for it to snow in our desert town.
I like to fancy myself a "citizen scientist" taking pictures to investigate what is happening in our garden and desert food forest. So out I went this morning with my cellphone to take pics of the snow. Here are the lessons I learned.The snow on the gravel or bare dirt has already melted. But where we have native plants (that some people call "weeds") or organic mulch in the catchment basin, the snow was still on the ground. I noticed that there was no snow left where our neighbors have gravel or just plain dirt in their yards. That demonstrates just how much heat gravel holds. But I already knew that from going barefoot when working on my yard in June. I walk on the horse purslane mulch to keep my feet from burning.
I found a similar development in the easement behind our house. The snow is sticking to the desert mustard on the ground beside our garden. Notice that the snow isn't sticking to the ground in the garden perhaps because the palo verde branches that shelter it from the summer sun also shelter it from the cold. Note that there are no "weeds" in the garden.
|snow on our neighbors' roof|
|snow melting into the cistern|
|view of the top of our watershed - the snowcapped Catalina Mountains|
Who knew we had a "snow water harvesting" system?! In the desert! How great is that!?