Posts Tagged ‘plate tectonics’

Board resting perpendicular to hill showing how much it has risen in the last few weeks.

Board resting perpendicular to hill showing how much it has risen in the last few weeks.

Something strange is happening in my yard. I’m not sure what to make of it. You see, there is a strip of lawn on the east side that was flat. In fact, it has always been the only part of my yard that is flat. Because of this, it’s the site where we set up canopies and chairs when we have get-togethers in warmer weather. I think we even did some lawn bowling there one summer. Why? Because it’s flat – real flat. Flatter than the proverbial pancake. You put a level on it and the bubble floats in the middle. It’s the kind of “broke” a person with absolutely no money would be. You know, like a giant skillet came crashing down upon it. Or like the sound a G string on a guitar makes when it’s a tad under-tightened. A straight line connecting two points on a plane, directly across from each other, would have nothing on this lawn. If you traveled back to the pre-Columbus years of the early fifteenth century and described this little stretch of grass to the average person, he would have said, “Oh, like the world, right?”

I just want to drive home the point that it was a flat level area. Always has been since we built our home here about ten years ago. Flat. Flat flat flat.

Then I noticed something when I pulled up to the house a couple of weeks ago. What was once a level strip is now a hill; a small hill, but a hill – and it’s been growing! The photo above shows that it’s about a foot high now. It runs along the length of that strip for about twenty feet. It was not there last summer! Believe me, I would have noticed. When I mow the lawn I save that area for last, because it’s the easiest to mow after about an hour of pushing the lawn mower up and down hills. You know, because of it’s flatness…

So what’s going on? Am I witnessing plate tectonics along the New England coast? Could this be the beginnings of a new volcano? Is there a really big mole tunneling beneath?

I have a theory, but won’t know if it’s correct until spring. This little area rests just west of an elevated area in the yard. That elevated area is often wet, in fact, I have cranberries thriving along its edge. When we first built the house, that level strip used to flood. I had to dig a trench to carry the water away from the foundation. I am thinking that water has collected beneath the lawn and froze in this long, cold winter. This is likely a wicked big frost heave.

So, I could be looking at one soggy patch of grass this spring. Time will tell…

Postscript: July 21 – Meant to tell ya’ll, it’s all been long flat a’gin…


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