Spring is finally here or should I say summer is finally here. The temperature was over 90°F for a couple of days which broke the record. I’m not complaining after months of snow and freezing temperature. The plants in our garden are not complaining either. They’re pushing out shoots and buds all over the garden. Dragging on as winter did, spring is still giving us a very promising new life especially after the recent rain.
After we successfully fended off the deer for the last two years, and relocated the last rabbit last year, we decided to grow tulips in the garden again. I’ve been planting tulip bulbs I rescued for years but only a few of them survive the animal raiding parties. But as I didn’t spend a penny on them, it didn’t feel very wasteful. Last autumn, I picked tulip bulbs from the catalogs for the first time and they’re looking good so far. Hopefully these beautiful flowers will come back up next spring.
We cannot be certified a ‘Wildlife Habitat’ since we’ve fenced off most of the four-legged locals around here: deer, rabbit, woodchuck, raccoon, skunk, fox and coyote. We would’ve welcomed fox and coyote but once the deer net went up, that was it. Access to the garden is limited to birds, insects and small rodents. Any gardeners who have a problem with deer, I would recommend a deer net. It’s the only thing that works. I no longer have to spray a mixture of garlic and rotten eggs in the garden or use other methods only to find that they aren’t effective. The fact is there aren’t any plants that the deer will not eat.
Anyway, we have colors and the scent of perfume in our garden again after a long wait.
It’s nice to see colors again. It’s even nicer to see not just our honeybees but many local bees getting busy looking for pollen and nectar.
I see the spring light at the end of the tunnel, a little dim but still a cheerful light of hope. Snow still covers the majority of the garden but in the bare specks there are colors. Crocuses in the front yard bloomed nicely this year. Last year they became deer food. At least deer left the bulbs alone so they came up with a variety of colors. We planted a lot of crocuses in the previous two autumns to provide early spring food for our honeybees. Many of them became food for squirrels, chipmunks, deer and rabbits but the survivors continue to come up in spring before disappearing underground again.
Our back yard is still covered with snow but it’s melting fast with high daytime temperatures. Some tulips and daffodils braved the cold pushing themselves up above it.
And, look at the busy girls. Yes, we call them girls because the worker bees are all female and they’re like our children. The weather is warm enough for them to go out foraging and most of them came back with baskets full of pollen. They’ve also taken in water from the birdbaths.
Spring is here after all. Thank you Mother Nature for giving us a break from the Nor’easter in the last few weeks.
We came back from our vacation to a sharp drop in temperature. Our friends told us that while we were gone the temperature had gone up to the 60°F for a couple of days and mostly hovered above 50°F for the rest of that period. I can see the result of warm temperatures in our garden. Roses, hydrangeas, tree peonies started to bud. The silver maple in the front yard has blossomed. The crocuses and snowdrops are blooming.
Then two days after we came back, the temperature dropped again, combined with a high wind that resulted in a wind chill below 0°F. Last night the temperature was in a teens and today it is barely above freezing. It’s de ja vu of last spring. Plants started budding only to get frost burn. We didn’t have any hydrangeas last year for this reason and the first round of roses looked awful.
I don’t even know how the honeybees are. They’ve been so quiet, no sign of dead bees in front of the hives. We weren’t here when the temperature soared up to see if they were out cleansing. They’ve been too quiet for my liking and I have no way of checking on them. It’s either too cold or too windy to open the hives up for inspection. To be on the safe side, I have ordered one more package of bees to be delivered in May.
Though it will not be a promising spring, I still look forward to it. It’s time for me to start tomato, pepper, and eggplant seedlings and prep tropical plants in the basement for a warm and less seesaw temperature outside. In a little bit over a month the seedlings should be able to set their roots in the garden and tropical plants will enjoy real sunlight. And, hopefully, the hives will have survived another winter.
Today is the official first day of spring and feels like it too. Spring flowers bloom, birds start clearing their territory and look for nesting spots. Not much to describe; just happy that spring is finally here.