Tag Archives: daffodils

My First Spring Flowers

As you may have noted from my last posting, the weather this winter has been erratic to say the least.  My crabapple bush tried to bloom last month, two months early, and the buds got frozen out.  So that bush is a bust.  And the wild raspberries in my yard are trying to go for it too.  So there will be a lot less flowers and fruit this year and probably some dead plants as well. If it doesn’t get cold enough to put them to sleep they either freeze to death or use up their food stores and starve to death before spring is properly sprung.

I’m happy to say that it appears my bulbs have weathered this nonsense well (no pun intended) and are beginning their annual show. (Except for the daffys, which are early.)

Peaking through the leaves I haven’t raked off yet.

A purple crocus peaking as well.

My mini irises.

Even if they’re early, I still love my daffys!

My first ‘bouquet’ of daffys! I love their smell. It’s the scent of spring.

 

Spring Has Sprung!

I was out hanging my bed on the line, enjoying the sunshine, listening to bird song and I looked around and realized, “This is it! Spring has arrived!” It brought a smile to my face.  Below are some of the things that assure me Spring has settled in.

The American Goldfinch's mottled molt has gone from this...

The American Goldfinch’s mottled molt has gone from this…

to this, a bright, brilliant yellow.

to this, a bright, brilliant yellow.

The earthworms are up in the top layer of soil, churning away.

The earthworms are up in the top layer of soil, churning away.

My Grape Hyacinths have burst into bloom.

My Grape Hyacinths have burst into bloom.  (Those little round lumps on the dead Hyacinth stalks are young seed pods!)

My late Daffys are blooming too.

My late Daffys are blooming too.

My Lilac bush has begun to bloom, but this year there are only a small hand full of blooms.  Did the late freeze kill them off?

My Lilac bush has begun to bloom, but this year there are only a small hand full of blooms. Did the late freeze kill them off?

Not to be out done, the yard is full of wild violets giving the grass a purple haze.

Not to be out done, the yard is full of wild violets giving the grass a purple haze.

And where would spring be without the ubiquitous dandelion!

And where would spring be without the ubiquitous dandelion!

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But you know what really nailed it for me today?  The bold and sassy song of the male House Wren calling the ladies to come investigate his awesome abode.  My son painted a small birdhouse many years ago and we hung it on our front porch.  Every year since we have raised at least one, but often two, broods of baby wrens.  A bold and curious bird, it has no problem setting up house next to us humans.  The babies when they fledge will get into and all over anything we have on the porch.  My houseplants have taken a beating some years when the babies decided they were ‘toys’ for their amusement.  Say ‘Hello!’ to Mr. Wren:

Look carefully!  You can see the a stick he is bringing to build the nest.  But can you also see the sticks on the left sticking out from under the eves?  He will push and shove some very long twigs until they snap or slide out of the sides of the birdhouse.  When he's done there will twigs sticking out of both sides of the birdhouse.  Male wrens will build a couple of nesting sites to offer the ladies.  The female wren will decide which she prefers and will put the finishing touches on the nest.

Look carefully! You can see the a stick he is bringing to build the nest. But can you also see the sticks on the left sticking out from under the eves? He will push and shove some very long twigs until they snap or slide out of the sides of the birdhouse. When he’s done there will twigs sticking out of both sides. Male wrens will build a couple of nesting sites to offer the ladies. The female wren will decide which she prefers and will put the finishing touches on the nest.

Will this be The One?  A female wren checking his work.

Will this be The One? A female wren checking his work.

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I hope where ever you are in the northern hemisphere, Spring is finally showing her face to you as well!

My First Spring Bouquet

Two warm days in a row and the daffodils and hyacinths burst forth.

Poof!  Blooms in two days.  Beauty next to the ugly.

Poof! Blooms in two days. Beauty next to the ugly.

All I did with these was to stick a shovel into the ground, pull back and dropped in the bulb. I think I need to dig them up and loosen the soil around them.  They haven't spread much.  However...

All I did with these was to stick a shovel into the ground, pull back and drop in the bulb. I think I need to dig them up and loosen the soil around them. They haven’t spread much in three years. However…

The bulbs in my butterfly garden have done much better in the loose soil.  (Just pretend the dandelions are dug up already :) .)

The bulbs in my butterfly garden have done much better in the loose soil. (Just pretend the dandelions are dug up already 😉 .)

The hyacinths like the garden as well.  Seven bulbs are now 26!  (Yes, I cut a couple -before- I took the picture!)

The hyacinths like the garden as well. Seven bulbs are now 26! There are more in another bed.  (Yes, I cut a couple -before- I took the picture! 🙂 )

First I put a short hyacinth on the window sill so I can watch it open.

First I put a short hyacinth on the window sill so I can watch it open.

And then I put together a couple of bouquets for the house.  It's wonderful to sit here and smell spring in my house.

And then I put together a couple of bouquets for the house. It’s wonderful to sit here and smell spring in my house.

Tomorrow the high will be 41 and the low 26.  *shakes head*  It will be wonderful to have spring in the house while the furnace is blowing away.  Though the tea in that mug will probably be replaced with hot chocolate!

The Spring Equinox (And Spring Has Actually, Finally Shown Her Face)

Hurray for the Spring Equinox!  It’s finally, officially Spring!  The ‘official’ Equinox occurred on Thursday, March 20th,  at 12:57 pm EST.  Our daylight length here where I live – 12 hours 10 minutes.  I love it!

But I knew ahead of time that spring was on its way.  How?  I SAW BEARS!!!  I did, I did!  I was driving back from delivering Saver of Bugs to school when I noticed some black blobs at the bottom of a tree in a fairly open area.  I did a double take and stared.   BEARS!!!   They were very close in size and not all that big so I figure they are last year’s cubs.  Momma must have been in the tree line.  Regretfully, I was driving on a main trucking route at speed.  Stopping for pictures would have put me on foot going back to get pictures at dusk.  Getting smooshed by a truck was not on my agenda.  Or as my son said, “Hit by a truck?! Seriously?!  How about EATEN by a freaking BEAR?!”  🙂

But back to Spring!  The following is a partial reblog from a post I did last year.  I just couldn’t think of anything more I wanted to add to this:

“…Once Upon A Time Long, Long Ago… when I was working horses and gardening and nature loving on a daily basis and was in tune with the seasons, this part of spring was expected and accepted. It was known as March Madness (and had nothing at all to do with basketball) or Spring Fever (and had nothing at all to do with big retail sales). This really hit me in the face since I have been struggling for several weeks now.

Between the lengthening days, more noticeable now, and the dramatic swings in the weather (that barometric pressure going up and down affects your body), animals and people alike are restless, moody, depressed and ecstatic all at the same time. Life can swoop from awful to wonderful from one step to another. It is just that time of year.

Those believing in Fairies say the upheaval is the passing of seasons from one Fairy Queen to the next.

Greek mythology talks of Demeter (in brief, Goddess of the Harvest), cursing the world and taking life from all growing things; when her daughter Persephone is taken to the underworld by Hades.  The deal to bring Persephone back is that for 4 months of the year she must return to the underworld.  During that time Demeter grieves and nothing grows.  Persephone’s return marks the beginning of spring.

Pagans and Witches have celebrated Ostara for hundreds of years (It’s the precursor to the Christian holiday of Easter).  This holiday is celebrated on the Spring Equinox when the hours of day and night are equal.  It is a celebration of rebirth as the world awakens from its winter sleep and “life” begins anew.

It’s all about Change.  From our seasonal sleep we are thrust fairly abruptly into our “awakening”.  There is a primal need, often unacknowledged by us humans, to take advantage of the cycle of growth, resulting in “March Madness” or “Spring Fever”.  When I was working on the farms, allowances were made for man and animal alike. “This too shall pass.” (Or in some cases, “Aw hell, it’s spring again.”)  In this “modern” civilization we forget that we, too, are creatures of Mother Earth and thus subject, to a certain extent, to her whims. We may forget our “roots” but our bodies don’t. We need to be patient with ourselves and others right now.  Acknowledge and accept the unsettled feelings as part of life’s cycles.  Remember that with this huge burst of Mother’s Earth’s creative energies, things are bound to be unstable for a while.  Just hold on tight!”

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The symbolic rebirth of Mother Earth after a long, hard, cold winter was supposed to be cold and nasty.  So I decided two days ago, with warm beautiful weather as company, to once again go looking for Spring outside.  I also decided it was time to start cleaning up out there and started by bringing the plants out of the garage.

Daffodils, weeks late, finally poking up through the grass!  YAY!

Daffodils, weeks late, finally poking up through the grass! YAY!

More Daffs in the garden!

More Daffs in the garden!

Mini Iris

Mini Iris

Hyacinth

Hyacinth

Buds on my small Amelanchier Laevis.

Buds on my small Amelanchier Laevis.

To save money, I grow a lot of things from seed and shop the clearance racks, especially at Lowe’s.  And life being what it can be not everything has made it into the ground.  The Dump (aka our garage) is too full for a car, so the back of the driveway is a convenient place for plants in pots.  This winter I put plants I knew wouldn’t survive outside in pots in the garage.  Unfortunately,  there were still a lot of pots in the driveway that had to deal with an unusually severe winter.

My mint survived it's winter in the garage and is starting to grow.

My mint survived it’s winter in the garage and is starting to grow.

And my Lemon Balm.

And my Lemon Balm.

The coreopsis on the left was in the garage.  The one on the right is still asleep.  Or dead!

The Coreopsis on the left was in the garage. The one on the right spent the winter in the driveway.  It is still asleep. Or dead!

But my Monarda in the driveway is still alive and awake!

But my Monarda in the driveway is still alive and awake!

So whether you celebrated the Spring Equinox on the actual Equinox or whether you celebrate on the calendar Equinox (the 21st), I wish you a happy beginning to your Spring!

Weather, Back Pain, a Little Bit of Work Done

 Random Thoughts

Not a whole lot to talk about today.  I’m still fighting with my back.  It’s amazing how tired pain makes you.  And when you can’t sleep properly, it just gets worse from there.

I found this saying rifling through some papers I had and it startled a laugh out of me.  And a, “Yeah, right”.  And an eye roll.  But still…

“I have a lot of excitement in my life.  I used to call it tension, but I feel much better now that I call it excitement.” –Madeleine Costigan

Life At Our House

WOO HOO!  I finished my monthly boxes!  I’m going to print out the inventory and add up the teapots and mugs.  I know I have over 40 teapots.  I’m going to split February in half so I can have January out for at least a little while.  My favorite winter teapot is in January.  But first Christmas needs to be put away.  February 2 (Candlemas) is looming.  Yikes!

We did get one thing done this weekend.  The Christmas dishes have been washed and put away.

I can't remember when I bought these.  I just remember they were on clearance...

I can’t remember when I bought these. I just remember they were on clearance…

Fur Babies and Other Friends

Shhhh...nap time.

Shhhh…nap time.

Out In The Yard

I am really tired of this screwy weather.  Here is three days ago:

Snow, snow, snow

Snow, snow, snow

And more snow.

And more snow.

Single digits and minus zero windchills made for hungry birdies.  Mourning Dove, Junco, Cardinal, and Chickadee

Single digits and minus zero windchills made for hungry birdies. Mourning Dove, Junco, Cardinal, and Chickadee

It has now been raining for 2 straight days.  It made it up to 68 degrees today.  And guess what I found?

Daffodils in freaking January.

Daffodils in freaking January.

And my white star shaped flowers whose name escapes me.  These have been dug up by my neighbors cats &%@#&.  Can you see the paw print in the mud?

And my white star shaped flowers whose name escapes me. These have been dug up by my neighbors cats &%@#&. Can you see the paw print in the mud?

And by tomorrow morning it is supposed to be back down to 27 degrees.  WTF?  My poor plants!

Mug of the Day

The following mug was given to me by my BFF when I was in college.  It survived all these years and, if I counted right, 11 moves.  Now Saver of Bugs has it at college with her.  And my BFF is her honorary Auntie.  Long live the blue horse mug!

This mug is so awesome.  Sorry about the pic quality though,  the camera's not the best.

This mug is so awesome. Sorry about the pic quality though, the camera’s not the best. – Saver

Slow Day

Random Thoughts

So today was a bit of a bust.  Bad night, sinuses full, ears full, head ready to explode.  Not much to talk about so here’s a quote:

“I like living.  I have sometimes been wildly, despairingly, acutely miserable, racked with sorrow, but through it all I still know quite certainly that just to BE alive is a grand thing.” — Agatha Christie

While I was visiting Julie (www.urthalun.com) her card of the day reminded me that I had been ignoring and neglecting my crystals – (crystals hold Earth’s memories as well as whale).  So I was skyping with Saver of Bugs and I think I may be showcasing a crystal every day and some of its meanings and uses.  Perhaps putting them here will help me get better acquainted with them; otherwise what’s the point in having them?  But first I have to figure out lighting issues.  Camera pro I am not.

Fur Babies and Other Friends 

HAM!

Puppy here has to go to the vet’s.  He’s squirting blood again and had 2 pee accidents over the weekend.  Sigh.

Out in the Yard 

So here are the violas I got for 99 cents a six-pack.  The picture is a little dark, but you can still see the flowers.

 

I managed to get three planters done.  Two to go.  Here are the wee plants in their new home:

Each planter has a different color.  For those of you wondering where the flowers went, I cut them off to give the plants a break till they settle into their new home.  Once they’re happy the flowers will start-up again.

Here’s the photo from the header.  More daffy’s.

And my mug, a bit late.  I forgot I had it!

I like the detail on the lip of the mug: