20 hours of nonstop rain

The much touted storm forecast for Thursday, December 11, 2014 did arrive and it did bring quite bit of rain to Northern California, but it wasn’t as cataclysmic as the media had made it out to be. At least not here in Davis. We didn’t have the high winds other areas experienced, and we didn’t have any flooding.


But it did rain for 20 hours straight, from about 9 am on Thursday until 5 am this morning, which translated into 3.73 inches. Not the 7 inches Lake Shasta recorded, mind you, but nothing to sneeze at either, especially considering that in December 2013 we had 0.39 inches for the entire month! This year, the December total is already a bit over 7 inches.


Bradford pear and Asian lemon bamboo (Bambusa eutuldoides ‘Viridividatta’)  as seen from upstairs

I minimized the amount of time I spent outside, but I managed to take a few photos through the windows and from the front porch:


Bradford pear leaves on flagstone


Bradford pear and Asian lemon bamboo (Bambusa eutuldoides ‘Viridividatta’)


Bambusa oldhamii from the loft


Flower stalk of Agave desmettiana ‘Variegata’ 


Chocolate bamboo (Borinda fungosa


More Bradford pear leaves—my project for tomorrow

This morning the rain finally stopped and I was able to perform a quick inspection. No damage, fortunately, just completely saturated soil and a few more leaves in places I had cleaned up last weekend.


The rosette of this Aeonium hierrense is so heavy, it flopped over because of the wet soil


Aeonium escobarii and California poppy seedlings. I swear, these seedlings grew visibly in the last 24 hours! They love the rain.


Agave desmettiana ‘Joe Hoak’ looking gorgeous


The wind did knock most of the leaves off this Caesalpinia gilliesii (the shrub with the bare branches). I thought it would be evergreen in our climate, especially since the coldest it’s been at night has been in the low 40s.


Aloe ‘Moonglow’ and Agave macroacantha enjoying a bit of sunshine this morning


Agave macroacantha with more leaves. I spent a good 30 minutes last Sunday removing all the debris that had gotten lodged between the leaves.


Another Aloe ‘Moonglow’. The red berries are the fruit from our Chinese pistache that got knocked off the tree by the wind.


These tiny gray-green seedlings aren’t weeds, they’re from a tower-of-jewels (Echium wildpretii) that flowered this past spring. I can’t wait to see how many will survive. If I end up with 5 or 6 plants that make it to maturity, I’ll be happy. (I’ll move them to better locations, of course.)


Aloe marlothii in the backyard. This is the wackiest-looking specimen I’ve ever seen. It reminds me of a beach octopus.


How does a leaf get speared like that on a Yucca aloifolia?


I was happy to see flower buds forming on this Daphne odora ‘Maejima’


Agave ovatifolia ‘Vanzie’, all muddy from the rain


I’ve been meaning to add rock mulch to this area to cover the bare dirt, but haven’t gotten around to it yet.


The rock mulch is in this wagon, which is now completely filled with water. Aaargh!


Oranges knocked to the ground by the wind. Maybe that means they’re ripe?

And finally, some aeonium photos. I can’t help it. Raindrops on aeoniums are to me what catnip is to cats.




I’ve welcomed all the rain we’ve received so far, but I hope we’ll get a break now so things can dry out a bit. Otherwise my succulents might drown!


  1. Hey, congrats on the rain and LOVE that Joe Hoak. If it ever goes missing….look up north somewhere :)

    1. I'm sure an adoption of a Joe Hoak offspring could be arranged in the spring :-)

  2. Wow, that's a lot of rain. So glad your ground is getting saturate and there was no damage. We got the crazy winds yesterday and I was surprised to find a huge branch from the fir trees behind us on the patio. Thank god that's where it landed because had it fallen on plants it could have smashed them flat. Also it's kind of nice to note that your Caesalpinia gilliesii are bare, so are mine which even though I know better does cause me some worry...

    1. Give me rain any day and keep the wind. Wind is so unpredictable, and it's been known to drive people crazy.

      I have two Caesalpinia gilliesii. One is bare, one isn't. Hmmm....

  3. When it rains it pours! The good side is that the ground should be thoroughly soaked through and through now.

    1. I'm finding so many plants sprouting. Not sure if they're weeds or desirables...

  4. We got tons of rain too. Steady and hard. Don't know exactly how much. Thank goodness we didn't get the horrific winds they were predicting. I was really worried about the gazebo and new greenhouse. I really want some sun now to dry things out.

    1. According to the chart on the news last night (can't remember which station), Roseville got 3.5", Davis got 3.73". So about the same. I'm happy to hear you were spared the 60 mph winds as well.

  5. Congratulations on your new portable water garden! Just stick in a few water plants and wheel it into place! :)

    Almost four inches is a lot even here!


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