Our community's Winter Festival is being held this weekend just as the snow is almost gone and the temperature is hitting the mid-50s today. Yesterday's high was 63 degrees F., about 30 degrees above normal. This temporary respite from winter has pushed the snowdrops up. Tomorrow's rainy forecast will no doubt speed them along. These are the generic double-flowered variety growing next to the house's foundation on the south side.
The minute the snow melts the moss is revealed and always brings such a lift to my spirits.
The same with Carex plantaginea (seersucker sedge); being buried for weeks under thirty inches of snow barely slows it down.
But the larger garden views are always depressing at this time of year, mostly because they reveal all the work that will need to be done quickly the minute winter is really over. There are branches of varying sizes all over the garden.
I just picked up the ones that weren't frozen in the snow yesterday afternoon. The driveway is looking all shiny from the snowmelt that is coming off the beds and running down it.
The front garden doesn't look too bad if you ignore all the debris tossed into the landscape from folks driving down the street. Scraps of paper, plastic bottles, cups and disgusting bits are everywhere. I am standing on the path that slopes down to the street. That far white piece of junk is actually in the street gutter.
But the big bad ugly mess is in the back garden. First up is my beautiful dwarf Hamamelis. I have huge Witch Hazel shrubs that are never bothered by rabbits or other garden critters. So I never thought to cage this new shrub before the winter. I paid extra to get an almost full size plant which has now been munched down to a shadow of its former self. The slanted cuts mean this damage was caused by rabbits and the height of the cuts indicate the height of the snow cover when it was attacked. In our new Trumpian world, this is not worth mentioning. But we're gardeners and every little broken branch is worth sighing — if not crying — over.
Last fall Mark and I bagged up more fallen honey locust pods than you can imagine. We knew there would be a few more to deal with come spring.
We were wrong. They are so thick on the ground you would think we were using them as mulch. Our trees used to put out seed pods sporadically but the last few years they have been raining down thickly each autumn. Since all the plants are dormant and underground, I may try to rake a few of these up this afternoon if they aren't still frozen in place.
That's my early, not quite Spring, report. Is it Spring yet where you garden?