Leave-fall hails dry-winter onset for colourful village
Winter approaches for another year at Millthorpe with the one eternal constant; Autumn leaves from the village’s deciduous trees that need raking-up!
Golden Memories Museum volunteers Marnie Mason and Fayah McKenzie were recently hard-at-work clearing-up piles of wind-blown leaves from the elegant London plane trees that grace Park Street and welcome visitors to the historic village.
The district though has again this year been subject to the continuing drought with only 240 mm (less than 10 inches) of rain falling for the first five months of the year which has affected the autumnal colours of the local flora.
“it’s been very dry and they haven’t been changing colours, just dropping,” Fayah observed.
The working bee, she explained, was timed to gather as many of the leaves as possible, which otherwise become slippery and dangerous to walk on when the wintertime rain arrives in the region.
“If we do these now, we only have to do them once more for the winter,” she added.
While January to May forms the drier season in the area, winter this year is unlikely to provide the much-needed relief for local pasture growth and gardens in the Blayney district.
The Bureau of Meteorology’s winter 2019 outlook forecasts large parts of south-east Australia to be drier than average with warmer-than-average winter days for June to August.
This is likely to lead to the “dry winter” effect for Millthorpe, perched nearly 1000 metres above sea-level, with dry, cool days followed by clear, cold nights and evening temperatures regularly dropping below zero.