Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Kansas Rain

Annual Rainfall

Back home in Indiana; 40 inches per year
Here in Kansas; 20 inches per year.

In Indiana farmers measure rain in tenths of an inch.
In Kansas farmers measure rain in hundredths of an inch.

I grew up in northern Indiana in an area with dozens of lakes.
I remember falls, winters and springs in Indiana where it seemed there were months and months of mud.

We complained about the rain, hoping it would finally come to an end. Rain caused mud, mud created ruts and ruts were hard to walk and drive over.

 Oh Indiana rain, rain, rain.

Kansas is different. In this part of Kansas there are no lakes. We are classified as a desert grassland.

In Kansas I've never heard anyone complain about the rain. Everyone is completely thankful for the rain. "We need the moisture." everyone comments. I've come to yearn for rain, watching the skies for any sign of a coming storm.

In Kansas water is precious. The aquifers that run below this part of the country are disappearing. Farmers who irrigate crops (corn) and use too much water are fined. Some farmers are moving towards drought resistant crops like sesame seeds. But there are just as many who refuse to change their customs and attitudes toward water usage.

After only six months living out here I've found myself being much more conservative in my water use; laundry, dishes, showers, gardens. I never knew how spoiled I was growing up surrounded by water. I find myself guilty of all the water I've wasted over the years. Water is on my mind much more than ever before.

I took these photos a couple weeks ago and I remember at the time how happy I was to see rain.

What is the rainfall like in your neck of the woods?


  1. We are in a drought so send rain our way! Will love any amount. At this rate mist would work.

  2. I had to do a little digging to find the answer but in my town our average annual rainfall is 30 inches.

  3. I am a prairie mother as well only on the North Dakota prairie. We are in a wet cycle in North Dakota but this time of year there is NO rain. We have snow, snow, snow! I am a new follower and can't wait to stay connected comparing prairie stories.

  4. Your mention of mud reminded me of when I was about in first grade. I remember wading in the mud and getting stuck! I hollered and hollered for my mom to come get me. One of the neighbors must have heard and had pity enough to call her. LOL

    We just came out of a drought last year, so it's rain, rain, rain all winter long. We still have an annual dry spell in the summer, but at least the reservoirs remain full.

  5. Where I live, we've been in a drought for the last 7 or so years. Until this past summer, where it seemed we had more days of rain than not! One of my friends, whose parents are farmers, was so happy about it, while the rest of the city groaned.

    I wish people around here were more water conscious. People don't think about it at all to keep the water running for long periods of time, watering their driveways and those types of things. I try my best not to waste water, but since it doesn't always seem pressing to conserve it, I fall short.

    I hope lots of rain heads your way this year!


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