And the storm came pounding in

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We were glad to make it back before the storm hit. As the sky darkened, rain started sheeting down. We were watching through our back windows when — look — it’s hail! How exciting is that!

That's a serious amount of hail, now blanketing our back yard and still coming
That’s a serious amount of hail, now blanketing our back yard and still coming
Hail covering our back deck
Hail covering our back deck

The hail kept coming in, pea sized, but overwhelming in numbers. Before long, the ground was white, as if it was a European winter scene.

The front garden, as if in a European winter
The front garden, as if in a European winter
The whole suburb was hit, including serious local flooding
The whole suburb was hit, including serious local flooding

And then — water — it’s leaking! — and then pouring! into the house through the ceiling. Damn!

It was the ice piling up on the flat roof, and causing the water to flow up, over the flashings and into the ceiling. Up I went onto the roof in the middle of the storm, with a stiff-bristle broom.

For 30mins I swept the hail into piles, away from the flashings and other vulnerable points. The roof simply wasn’t designed for this, and anywhere it could get in, it did.

By the time I came back down, water was still pouring through the light fittings, and we’d been plunged into darkness. Thankfully the ceiling held, unlike some of our neighbours, who had their gyprock ceilings collapse on them while watching TV.

Pounded by hail into oblivion!
Pounded by hail into oblivion!
The carrots didn't fare any better...
The carrots didn’t fare any better…

The garden suffered badly. While the big trees were stripped of leaves, the smaller natives shrugged it all off. The vege patch and herbs, however, were destroyed. Pounded into the ground, until a mush.

These used to by daikon, surrounded by cabbages...
These used to by daikon, surrounded by cabbages…

Some will recover, but some won’t. There goes much of our winter crops…

The sorrel will undoubtedly survive, but it ain't pretty
The sorrel will undoubtedly survive, but it ain’t pretty

The life of an urban farmer isn’t an easy one. They say this was a once-in-40-year storm. Considering we’d suffered a once-in-a-decade superstorm (600mm over 48 hours) earlier in the same week, I’m not putting money on it…

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2 thoughts on “And the storm came pounding in

    […] in the photo above, the garden didn’t work out well in practice. There were two main reasons: the hailstorm, which wiped out most plants; and the local birds who ate the […]

    […] Pretty much all of the groundcovers were wiped out by the big hailstorm. […]

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