Although it does snow occasionally in the Santa Cruz Mountains, it rarely snows this close to sea level.  In winter we typically get rain, even when it’s snowing up at the Summit.  This weekend though, Curbstone Valley Farm had a rare dusting of SNOW!

It wasn't much, but it actually snowed this weekend!

Throughout late last week meteorologists were touting that San Francisco may be getting its first snow in the City since 1976.  Although a few flakes fell around Twin Peaks on Friday night, sadly the City didn’t get enough snow to really stick.

We knew by Thursday that our chance for snow was a little greater than the City.  We were concerned, especially for our young fruit trees in bloom and bud, so we scrambled that morning to cover the most frost tender trees with frost blankets. Of course, this was only feasible because the trees are still of a manageable height.

By the time we were done, it looked like we'd planted lollipop trees in the orchard

We covered the peaches, and plums, the aprium, as well as the blueberries, and we hid some frost tender plants in containers under row cover over a fallow raised bed in the garden.

Then we waited to see what would happen.  Our weather station saw snow for the first time…

We didn't need a weather station to know it snowed!

The snow per se wasn’t our biggest concern, as temperatures are usually a little warmer during snow fall.  The greatest risk to the plants was the cold that followed.

Blooming fruit trees and ice can be problem

I grew up in snow, and I know that people who endure real snowfalls, requiring shovels and ploughs, think that us coastal Californians seem a little overly paranoid when it comes to even a smattering of sweater weather, but our gardens here along the coast aren’t usually planted with this sort of weather in mind.  A minor heat wave by February is almost expected each winter, and our gardens wake up after a mild winter very early in the growing season.  We don’t usually expect snow and ice!

Late Friday we kept an eye on the area radar and by 11 PM we could see a band of mixed precipitation heading our way that was estimated to arrive by 3:30 AM.

Some of the snowflakes were huge!

The last time we were in snow, we had to drive to get there, so determined not to miss it, I had set the alarm for 3:00 AM.

Snow on the tractor!

The alarm went off, and I peeked outside…to see I’d already missed some snow!  Soon though, it began snowing again!  It’s a good thing we can’t see our neighbors from here. Standing out in the snow, at 3:30 in the morning, people would think we’re crazy!

By 3:00 AM we already had snow on the cars

No, really crazy…we even took the dogs outside to play as the snow was falling!

Our youngest dog (on leash) had never seen snow before. "Mmm...snow is tasty!"

Just enough fell to leave paw prints in the snow

After catching up on some sleep, when we woke we were surprised to see the snow was still there, and even though it was only a light dusting, it was beautiful to see.  There was snow on the roof tops…

Snow on the roof, and a little in the trees

The Redwood trees looked especially beautiful.

Snowy Redwood

The forest looked like it had been dusted with confectioner's sugar

There was snow on the daffodils…

A drooping daffodil in the snow

The orchard fence helped to hold up some of the snowy Dutch Master daffodils

By mid morning though, as the sun rose higher, the snow began to melt away, but it was fun while it lasted.

Once the snow melted, we were happy to see the daffodils standing tall again.

Dutch Master daffodil after the snow

I’m not sure that it snowed at a much lower elevation than we are here.  Our orchard sits just about 500 ft above sea level.

Snow-touched redwood trees near the house

Did you see any snow around the Bay Area this weekend?