Rain sneaks in to push season totals

Gilroy
– Wednesday’s rainfall brought with it just a little more
drizzle in what has been an exceptionally wet and rainy season for
Gilroyans. Showers so close to summer are a rarity in the area and
the Western Regional Climate Center reported rainfall on the same
day only one other time in the past 10 y
ears, in 1998.
Gilroy – Wednesday’s rainfall brought with it just a little more drizzle in what has been an exceptionally wet and rainy season for Gilroyans. Showers so close to summer are a rarity in the area and the Western Regional Climate Center reported rainfall on the same day only one other time in the past 10 years, in 1998.

While most residents were sleeping, .30 inches of rain fell overnight. The average for the usually sunny day is .001 inches. From Jan. 1 to June 9, 17.8 inches of rain fell, more than 7.5 inches above the average usually seen during the first half of the year. For the season, which runs July 1 through June 30, 29.43 inches of rain fell, one of the wettest seasons in two decades, according to the Western Regional Climate Center, located in Nevada.

Santa Clara County Agricultural Commissioner Greg Van Wassenhove said it is still too early to tell if the recent rain fall damaged crops, but he suspects it has.

“It will certainly lower the quality of the grain hay,” Van Wassenhove said.

Rain followed by warm weather is disastrous for strawberries because it causes them to decay, Van Wassenhove said. Most cherry crops have already been harvested for the season, but the rainfall could lead to splitting in the cherries that are ready to be picked.

Andy Mariani, owner of Andy’s Orchard in Morgan Hill, hasn’t had a chance to check his nectarines or the last of his cherry crops, but he said the rain caused some damage to his apricots and plums.

“It certainly doesn’t help,” Mariani said. “Anything that is smooth will crack.”

“Crop values are going in the wrong direction,” Wassenhove said of the damage caused by the this year’s rain.

The Santa Clara Valley Water District also has concerns about the effect of the rainfall on water use in the county. They warned residents not to take the extra water for granted. The water district is launching the “Water-Wise House Call” program.

The program offers free surveys of water use in homes and yards that will help residents save water and as well as money on their monthly bills.

For more information on the Santa Clara Valley Water Districts “Water-Wise House Call” visit www.valleydistrict.org or call 800-548-1882.

Rain totals

Gilroy had an unexpected rainfall Wednesday, close to the end of the rainy season. Gilroy resident John Scherrer shared his yearly rain records from 2000 to 2004.

2005 29.43 *

2004 21.06

2003 22.92

2002 18.96

2001 19.34

2000 22.48

* From July 1, 2004 – June 8, 2005 from Chestnut Fire Station records.

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