The Nor-West Wind

Gum Tree Bark

Good gardeners know their own weather patterns like the back of their gloved gardening hand. The Moosey garden is much affected by Canterbury's classic nor-west wind. It's a noisy nuisance.

A hot, dry wind...

The nor-wester is a nasty hot dry wind which blows mainly in spring and summer. It sucks the moisture out of the ground, and is very tiresome for the Head Gardener, necessitating much sneaky watering in the daytime, and having the big irrigation running overnight.

Many of the older Moosey trees are large gums, and the nor-west creates a very noisy, aggressive mood as it whooshes through these. Such days are not pleasant gardening days, and often the Head Gardener gets very gloomy as the soil dries out before her very eyes. There can be pretty sunsets, though, as the clouds form a nor-west arch in the sky.

 Pretty sunset, horrible wind!
Nor-West Arch

New Zealand's weather sometimes seems to get stuck in a continuous loop, and day after day will blow nor-west. Without the shelter trees the house and garden would then become a dust bowl.

 Just the boring magenta ones, but I still love them!
Floppy Foxgloves

And of course the garden suffers from excess, untimely wind. Flowers flop, and pieces of bark litter the lawns below the big Eucalpytus trees.

 Lady Hillingdon is in there somewhere!
Tree Mess - End of Willow Tree Garden

In 2013 the early spring nor-west gales were so severe that they brought down next-door's pine plantation. Trees fell like dominoes, and my garden was lucky to escape with minor damage. Mind you, it took months and months of cleaning up (and quite a few teary sessions) before things were back on track again.