Saturday, February 18, 2017

The New Normal

It’s not normal. That’s what my dad would have said had he been here to experience these days of 60 degree temperatures in February. The snow is nearly gone. The ice is melting. The golfers are golfing. Teenagers are playing basketball outdoors without their shirts.

But there’s a downside to this respite from winter. We had something similar last year, but a little later. It warmed up; my grape vine began to blossom, and it got frosty once more. The result: In 2015 I harvested a bushel of grapes, in 2016, I harvested five grapes, not five pounds, not five quarts, but five, scrawny little grapes. The grape blossoms had frozen. Let’s hope this doesn’t happen this year.

I talked to a friend a couple days ago about this. He told me the acorn production last year was way down—the oak flowers came out too early and had frozen. I’m sure there were many other examples.

While we in the Midwest are basking in pseudo summer, the West Coast is drowning in floods, and the East Coast is buried in winter. Are these kinds of weather patterns the new normal? Researchers on climate change say “yes.” Unexpected weather patterns. One-hundred year rainfalls coming every couple of years. Record high temperatures in winter. Then below freezing.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: The new normal for weather—fooling the plants. Confusing the people.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP: Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose, WI. Call 920-622-3835 for reservations. Limited enrollment. Workshop meets Nine to Twelve in the morning.


Wednesday, February 22, 6:00 p. m. Wild Rose H.S. Auditorium. Premier Showing of Never Cruse the Rain, A Film by Wisconsin Public TV. Jerry’s newest hour-long documentary.

Wednesday, March 8, 7:00 p.m. Never Curse the Rain on all Wisconsin Public TV stations.

Saturday, March 18, Madison Area Master Gardeners, Goodman Community Center, Madison. Whispers and Shadows.

Wednesday, March 29, 10:00 a.m., Keynote speaker, Master Agriculturist Award Program, Oshkosh.Saturday, April 8, 9-12:00 a.m. Writer’s Workshop, Wild Rose Library.

Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fundraiser for them):

The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs:

Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps (based on The Quiet Season book.)
Jerry Apps a Farm Story (based on Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm books.)
The Land with Jerry Apps, (based on the book Whispers and Shadows.)
Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including: Jerry’s newest novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County. and Wisconsin Agriculture: A History.
Jerry’s newest books, Roshara Journal (with photos by Steve Apps) and Telling Your Story—a guide book for those who want to write their stories—are also available.
Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street
Wild Rose, WI 54984

1 comment:

Don R said...


Many years ago, my Dad and I were standing on the milkhouse steps after evening chores and we enjoyed an above freezing Southwest wind for a few, brief moments. It just so happened to be March 21st and I loudly exclaimed, "Spring is here!" To which my Father came right back with, "Just because it says Spring on the calendar doesn't make it so." And he was right, of course. Spring would still be several weeks and a few snowstorms to go in the Northern Door County of my youth. It certainly is different now.