Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The seasons

It's just arbitrary that we call the first day after the vernal equinox the first day of spring. In fact, it's pretty much arbitrary that we mark the equinox at all. If we didn't have clocks and clear horizons, we wouldn't even notice that it's 12 hours from sunrise to sunset. Today, in much of the country, winter weather is long gone, whereas elsewhere, including here, it's still with us.

Last year, to the extent we had winter at all, it was over by now. That was bad -- the warm dry spring left the soil deprived of deep moisture, and it never really recovered. The fruit trees bloomed early, only to be nipped by an April frost. The wooly adelgids came back on the hemlocks. Many towns had to restrict water use later in the summer.

This year, the vernal pools are full, mud season is properly muddy, the sap is running by day and stopping by night, all as it should be. Yes, it's annoying to your humble and obedient servant to still be chilly and hauling in wood and hemmed in by snowy ground; but when the time comes, my garden will jump and my trees will be heavy with fruit. The hemlocks will be green and the grass swarming with crickets and toads, much to the joy of the birds. And I'm getting solar gain already at 7:30 in the morning, so that part is happening no matter the temperature. I can't complain, or I shouldn't, even if I do.

1 comment:

  1. We're getting our first real rain of 2013, and we're absolutely jazzed about it. Pretty scary here to go through January and February bone-dry. We like the wet earth in March!