Monday, March 26, 2012

We'll Pay for This

We're experiencing record warm temperatures and absolutely brilliant weather.  I fear I'm one of the few, after 4 weeks of benevolent weather, who isn't bemoaning climate change.  At about this time in years past I'm doing the "I'm not going anywhere whinge" while shovelling the last March snowfall.  But this year, I'm down on my knees in the garden, pulling off the leaves at a rate of 2 bags a day.  The sun is shining and the warmth reaches under my sweater and warms me from head to toe.  I can't help but smile and think how wonderful it all is.  Everyone who walks by says, "This weather is great.  But we're going to pay!"  You just have to shake your head.  We've been given this gift that hasn't happened before in living memory (we've broken records from 1934) and we just can't appreciate it while it's here.  We've taken off the parkas and mitts and scarves and hats, but kept the mindset that our weather is simply a Trojan Horse - we're just waiting for the storms and ice hiding inside.

Here's what I've seen around the neighbourhood - the good, the bad and the ugly of this early spring.  Behold: a lawn that no longer has any grubs c/o Simon Skunk or Rocky Raccoon.

Kevin had me jump out of the bath to take a look at a Really Weird Bird that was walking down the street.  I donned my track suit that is not normally permitted to go outside and stalked the Ring Neck Pheasant for 2 blocks with my camera.  We don't have any fields nearby.  There really isn't any open space, I have no idea what he was doing here.  Can't imagine what he was thinking about the ill-dressed woman who was chasing him down the street.

Judging from the write-up in the National Audubon field guide he must have been a young male.  A mature male will be 36" - he was about 24, I'd guess.

With the strange warmth, we've had lots of fog.  Here's the hamamelis framed by an old beech.

He's back!!!!

I have no idea where the chippies go over the winter, but it's so much fun to have them back.  Can you guess who misses them the most?

Once he's found one, it's impossible to get him inside.

The view by the lake was just magical

with a sweet little song sparrow singing away:

We have been warned that this warm weather will bring all sorts of disease and insects.  When I was doing my morning poke and look I thought, "Oh boy, this looks like fungus...."

 Actually, it was just pollen.  I had no idea Taxus was such a prolific pollen producer.  Here I tried to get a picture of the pollen when I tapped the branch.

The  Hepatica is the flower to me that signals spring is well and truly on its way.

This is the Abeliophyllum distichum that was run over.  It's doing very well considering.  Unfortunately the Cornus alternifolia didn't do so well.  Kevin and I had taken a chance moving him from one bed to another mid-summer, and looks like it didn't work.  Oh well.  Just means there's room for something else now.

I've spent a lot of time in the front, haven't got around to the back yet.  At this time of year, you really can see old Bart's running track.

 I think I hear him now....

Lots of wee blossoms if you know where to look.

Helleborus 'Ivory Prince' - such a wonderful plant.  So easy to grow.

This a.m. it was about -2C (29F) - do hope that these Magnolia blossoms are fine.

And sadly, another old girl bites the dust - Norway spruce - fell in exactly the same direction as the wind this a.m.  Fortunately it didn't seem to hurt anything other than the fence.

It's been grand to think about flowers and walks and weather, but it's back to taxes for now.  I'll be so glad when it's all done and I can turn my full attention to the garden and the spring-gift season at hand.  More later this week.


NHGarden said...

Just wanted to say I really enjoyed this post! Our skunks get the grubs too! They sure worked your lawn :)

Barbarapc said...

Thank you.

Fortunately it was a neighbour's lawn this year - mine is free and clear after last year's feast.