Armed with a rake and a shovel, I could hear the lilt of a Baltimore oriole. They always seem to nest in the same tree, high atop the canopy of the Cutoff, usually somewhere just south of heaven atop the stately old sycamore. When I’m lucky, I can see his bright orange chest against the bald, white bark of the tree. Not this day, however, as his voice came floating down to me in the early morning crisp. I scratched the beds, unveiling the newly emerged shoots of ferns and the leaves of poppies, the tips of hostas and the wide green leaves allium, their buds just starting to swell.
We did not get the leaves raked out of the flower bids before the first snow of winter. I fretted, as gardeners are wont to do, but, it seems it may have been the best of things, after all. Although I am in a frenzy to rake it all out now. With two acres and a considerable number of large trees, there is much to do this year. As I continue uncover bits of our plots, I find that there has not been all that much damage to the plants. I do believe that the carpet of leaves, several inches in depth, followed by three feet of snow, provided an insulated blanket for the perennials.
So, dear reader, it was a busy weekend. Our community garden was officially opened, seasonal plant stands were in the full flush of blooms and buyers, and the first of the outdoor art shows popped up under tents in an historic park, under the magnolia blooms.
I hope your weekend was as full of wonder and appreciation for nature as mine was, whether in the throes of spring in the northern hemisphere, or in the slowing down season of fall in the southern.