What a difference some rain makes!

It's amazing what a difference rain makes in the garden. Over the last 30 days our rainfall total is 0.88" above normal and you can see it in our plants - everything is thriving. The zucchini seeds we planted have sprouted and already put on their first true leaves; the cukes, peas, and beans are all finding their way up our trellises; and you can see the beginnings of blossoms on our bell peppers and tomatoes. For this gardener there's nothing more satisfying than a nice steady spring rain followed by a day of sun. Plants seem to respond with explosive growth so rapid it makes you think you can see the cells multiplying if you look hard enough.
Of course I'm not naive enough to think this good fortune is going to last as we head into June. Our soaker hoses are down and our rainbarrels are full and at the ready. I still need to buy a pump I saw at Harbor Freight Tools that hopefully will deliver water from our rain barrells to the soaker hoses with enough pressure to push water through the pores in the hoses. Even though the rain barrell in the picture below is about four feet off the ground, gravity alone isn't enough to push the water out of the soaker hoses. However, this set up does work great for watering our blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, asparagus, hops, and strawberries, all of which are down hill from the barrell.

The fruits and veggies aren't the only things benefitting from our spring rains. Our perrennials in this bed seem to really be enjoying themselves as well. Even our chickens are benefitting from the rain. Since the coop is right next to a rain barrell their waterer gets filled from the barrell, which is also convenient for the chicken keepers.

I guess about the only downside to our rainfall is that the weeds are doing very well too, but given the "exceptional" drought we went through last year I'll take the weeds with the rain.