Ever the optimist, I went out on March 19 hoping to find 10 early signs of spring.
The results: not one.
No singing birds and no emerging plants except for green leaves that have endured the winter for Garlic Mustard, Motherwort, Dame’s Rocket and others.
This morning I had success. Here is my list:
#10 STINGING NETTLE
Some green leaves have just emerged.
#9 MANY ROBINS
#8 MORROW HONEYSUCKLE
The buds of Honeysuckle stay hidden all through the winter and emerge in spring.
Mallards tend to stay in largish groups during the winter but pair off and begin looking for secret nesting places in spring.
#6 GARLIC MUSTARD
These tiny, round, green leaves are plentiful at the moment.
The males are starting to develop their breeding gold colours and blackish head markings.
#4 TREMBLING ASPEN
The pussy willow-type flowers are now out.
#3 SONG SPARROWS
I had many singing Song Sparrows this morning.
#2 KENTUCKY BLUE GRASS
It can be recognized by its boat-shaped leaf tips. Kentucky Blue Grass is famously neither blue nor from Kentucky.
#1 WOOD DUCKS
A female is already claiming a nesting box and the male is nearby.
There are also a few human signs of spring.
#1 The mountain bike trails show lots of activity.
#2 I’ve got the Benjamin Britten SPRING SYMPHONY in my car CD player.
Poems with a spring theme by Spenser, Milton, Herrick, Auden, Blake and others set to music with full orchestra by one of the finest 20th century composers.