Sunday, May 4, 2014

So Late Seems Spring

Winter is over, but the memory of it will remain for a long time. It was much colder than most years, with longer stretches of frigid temperatures than usual. It wasn't that it reached a record breaking sub-zero temperature anytime, but that there were such long stretches so much colder than normal.

It took its toll on even the hardiest of native plants. Many evergreen trees of every variety have large amounts of brown needles this spring. I don't think that I am alone as I anxiously await signs of life in some favorite perenials.

The little bits of green in this photo might mean Cosmos and maybe Bachelor's Buttons to bloom in the summer if they can survive the remaining nights of freezing temperatures.  Then again, they could just be weeds, in which case, it will be preferable if they are edible.

As I finally cleared away protective layers of leaves in some flower and herb beds the other day, there was joy for the bits of life beginning to emerge and wondering for the areas that are still barren. Most years, by the time I remove the protective leaves, the poor plants underneath are stretching upward, colorless for lack of sunlight.  This year, it will still be a few more weeks yet before we know the full extent of what survived and what succumbed. I am very grateful for everything that survived.

The poor, mistreated red rhubarb (not planted when it should have been, nor with good manure, then uprooted and moved less than a year later, and again, alas, no manure) is just poking through the ground. I wonder if it will ever grow large enough to pick for eating?

It's still colder than normal here and that makes it seem like spring is so late. I just hope most of the leaves removed today were protecting hardy natives, like wild violets and wild columbine, because they just might survive the freezing temperatures we still get at night.