Frosty tumbleweeds in a Texas corral

Frost in Broke Tree Corral (October 29, 2011).

For the first time since last April, frost rests upon the Broke Tree Corral!  The temperature at the ranch house read 35 deg. F., but when I walked down to the corral, I saw frost.  Then I photographed frost on the horse apples and soil (I could have photographed frost on the trailer, but this was a neat pic with green tumbleweed).

This weather event is worthy of a separate post — should have made it on Saturday — because, well, it’s cold for a change, and we have been sweltering, perspiring, cussing, finding shade, digging caves and seeking the earth’s innards for cool places like Sonora Caverns or Carlsbad Caverns.  Many of us in the Southwest have even constructed wine cellars for cool comfort even though many Texas vaqueros  prefer Shiner or Casa Blanca beer and won’t use the cellars for anything but a cool getaway.  River bottoms at night also offer pleasant temperatures.  Bear Creek and Palo Pinto Creek near my ranchito are cool at night.

I like the tumbleweed and frost.  Yesterday I had to shred tumbleweeds in the Broke Tree because when they dry up the tumbleweeds will detach from the soil, roll around and scare the horses at night — yes, tumbling tumbleweeds.  I am not going to ever use tumbleweeds for Christmas trees.  Too fragile, smell funny.  The way this economy is going, however, I may cut the tumbleweeds and go to the Metroplex and purvey to florists!  I am getting a mite desperate.

Tumbleweed courtesy of



Filed under Plants and Shrubs

10 responses to “Frosty tumbleweeds in a Texas corral

  1. Hej Jack!
    Maybe they could be used as insulation in houses, if they are packed??

  2. Ha! Sort of a SW baby’s breath, which are picked in similar shapes and sizes. I once had tumbleweeds close in after me on a minimally used road in SE Utah. They are capable of scratching up a car pretty good, as I discovered, after having to drive through them on the way out. As quick as I could throw them to one side of the road, another took its place. Frost on the tumbleweed is frosty, indeed.

  3. I swear, the weather is upside-down! We have had some cold nights lately, but not nearly that much frost yet!

  4. I’ve seen folks spray the tumbleweeds white or silver and make “dry” snowmen out of them. Just another thought for your sales pitch. I used to love watching them scurrying across the sand as the wind pushed them along, when I was a kid.

  5. In New Mexico I have seen the tumbleweed used for Christmas in many ways, snowmen, Christmas Trees, and even Christmas Lights on them. With the economy it does not sound like a bad idea.

  6. Tumble weeds conjures up a picture in my mind of old western ghost towns, abandoned mining camps, and lonely cowboys on the prairie. The weather/climate certainly is challenging these days, Hardly predictable, and even down right cantankerous. By the way, what does a florist do with tumbleweeds? Educate me!

    • Bill, I think I want to compose a post on tumbleweed decoration in answer to your question! Quick answer is that you spray paint them and put little Christmas ornaments on them for the season. Thanks, Bill, you have inspired me again!

  7. Once upon a time, I snagged a tumbleweed for myself somewhere in New Mexico (I think) and brought it back to Houston with me. I divided it, and filled a couple of pots with its branches. I must have had it for five years.

    One of my best travel experiences ever: the look on the face of the fellow next to me at the gas station as he said, “Lady, is that a tumbleweed in your back seat?”

    I think you might have more than frost this morning – I see magenta on the radar up around Abilene. My weather guru’s muttering over his charts and predicting a half-inch of rain for Houston next week, and more north and west. That would be you – I’ll keep my fingers crossed!

    • Oh, yes, Linda, frost on the pumpkin this morning. It is 27 deg. F. and cold enough to layer the clothes. I like that, “Lady, is that a tumbleweed…?” Could be a title of a novel, memoir?

  8. Pingback: Tumbleweeds | Bell Book Candle

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