Saturday Sedum Watch: That Was Unexpected

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Crunch, crunch, crunch.

Anyone with unirrigated land in South Texas knows how it feels and sounds as you walk across dry parched grass.

Crunch is the sound I heard as I walked to see the sedums this week.

That was unexpected.

Just last week at the Lost Madrone Ranch, I walked through a bright yellow field of wildflowers showering me with sunshine.

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The yellow was brilliant, and the daisy-like flowers harmonized with the soft green grasses, lending a sense of splendor to the field.

The experience set the expectation that a stunning display of blooming sedums was just around the corner.

However, this week, as I stepped through the brown, dry, thirsty grass toward the sedum patch near the ranch house, I glanced across the carpet of sedums and realized the effect of zero water in the rain gauge.

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I was hosting out of town company, a family friend visiting San Antonio and the Texas Hill Country for the first time, and the forecasted rain had not come to Comfort.

That was unexpected.

My “rain curse” — well known to most of my friends and family —  means heavy rains whenever I have out of town guests, travel, or plan an outdoor event or party.

Kaye, a dear friend of my parents, was in town to visit my mom (and me too). She has known my mother for 58 years, and seeing them with each other made the visit perfect, regardless of the weather.

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Not only was the weather dry, but the temperatures were glorious.

That was unexpected — a happy unexpected event.

The high of the day only reached 75 degrees, and a steady strong breeze blew across the hilltop. Rather than heading for cover mid-day to escape sweltering heat, we spent the entire afternoon exploring the Lost Madrone Ranch in unseasonably cool.

Yet, it was curious how dry and brown the short grasses had become since the week before.

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After crunching across our patch of lawn to arrive at the patch of sedums, I stood underwhelmed at the sedum bloom. More sedums were blooming, and overall, the carpet of green sedums had changed to a carpet of yellow for the first time.

The bloom was still not at its peak, but the shades of brown grass and dry soil cast a dull tone to the blanket of yellow.

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Note the difference from last week.

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I reached for my camera to document the changes.

Pointing it toward the sedum patch, I flipped on the power button.

My camera would not turn on.

That was unexpected.

Imagine my dismay when I realized I left the camera battery snuggled in the battery charger plugged into the kitchen outlet back in San Antonio.

Disappointed, I took the photographs for this post with my iPhone.

Looking up close, I found lovely yellow sedum blooms.

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The prettiest blooms were around the loose rocks off to the sides of the larger sedum patch.

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And, dainty green sedums were tucked among the clumps of taller grasses growing in deeper dirt.

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However, in the shallow soil, out in the open sedum patch, the shorter grasses were dry and brown, and the sedums looked parched as well.

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The sedums in this area, while turning yellow, seem to stare to the sky as if praying for rain.

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The sedum cycle calls for blooming, so no matter the dry condition, or size of sedum, the flowers are coming.

That was unexpected.

Watching the sedums grow each week, I expected the smallest sedums to eventually catch up in size before blooming. Even the teeniest sedums were starting to flower.

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Kaye and I decided to walk to the far back corner to check the sedums in that area of the ranch.

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Along our walk, we were surprised to spot a lone cluster of sedums in the middle of the road! Can you see the sedums from the photo below in the photo above?

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That was very unexpected.

And, for the first time, the sedums in the back corner patch looked better than the sedums near the house.

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That was unexpected too!

Although still dry, the soil is deeper here in places, and we found fuller clumps of sedums in bloom.

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In my post, Take Comfort: My Blog Introduction, I note how nature reveals resiliency.

We need rain at the ranch for the sedum show to come to a spectacular conclusion in the coming week or two.

Maybe what will be stunning is the resiliency of this teensy plant to bloom at all in the rugged hill country?

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Resilience is overcoming the unexpected — both happy and hard. Watching nature’s resiliency, along with faith and support from family and friends, helps me find the inner strength to overcome the unplanned events in my life.

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It is expected — no, guaranteed — that unexpected occurrences will happen. How will you meet setbacks and find value from the hard unexpected events in life? How will you celebrate and find gratitude in the happy unexpected events?

My postscript this week is sharing a happy unexpected event that took place this past Tuesday morning.

Dr. Gurney, Jimmy’s burn doctor, surrounded by her team of six other burn specialists, stood examining Jimmy’s burns with happy surprise. The burns to his hands and forearm have healed to where they are no longer at risk for infection. Time and a regiment of motion, creams, and protection from the sun are all Jimmy needs for continued healing.

Within the hour of the doctor’s visit, Jimmy  — slathered in sunscreen and wearing a hat on his head and covers on his hands — backed out of the driveway for an unexpected return to Baylor! He will still take his final exams in the coming weeks after the semester has ended, but to be at school for the final few days of his freshman year is a happy step in an unexpected hardship in life.

Thank you to all who supported Jimmy, and us, to overcome this unexpected event.

Do you think there is any chance we can expect rain this week?

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Happy Saturday!

10 thoughts on “Saturday Sedum Watch: That Was Unexpected

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