Spring has sprung in south west
The first inkling of spring is the return of the robins. They have amassed around my house like a starving army. The friendly robins brought various friends with them-woodpeckers, blue jays, cardinals, sparrows, and cute little birds that have no name. They demand food.
Every morning I yank open my blinds and am greeted by glaring birds. They swarm the bird feeders. Upon finding them empty they turn their beady eyes to my window and squawk. No chirping here. They are hungry. Buy stock in bird seed companies-you will profit!
Time for spring chores. There are apple trees to be pruned, evergreen bushes to be lopped off, a garden to be tilled, and a mountain full of leaves to be raked out of garden beds. I thought I would start with the easiest and rake leaves. That's when my heart almost gave out as I drug my rake through the asparagus garden.
How is it weeds grow when nothing else can? They were blanketed all winter by oodles of leaves, giving them no sunlight. We are in a drought, they have had hardly a drink all winter. Yet, here they are green and healthy.
The farmers say the ground is too cold to plant. There is still frost in the ground, they claim. How do they know this? Do they dig a hole? Do they stick a thermometer in the earth? (I actually jammed my meat thermometer in my garden. The red dial didn't budge.) Do the farmers congregate in fields at night and have soil seances?
Spring seems to bring out more critters. Field mice are in abundance. Snuggles thinks it is her duty to stalk, capture with her razor-sharp claws, and carry these varmints in the garage. She throws them around like they are one of her toy mice. I keep telling her they are called field mice for a reason.
Actually after a bitterly cold winter all these spring things are welcome with open arms. We rejoice the passing of winter and on to the growing season.
But, this is
Iowa. I am told you can never count on the weather
in April. I woke up this morning, pulled
open the blinds and was not greeted with starving birds. I was blinded by the white ground. This was an eerily familiar sight.
Yes, it had snowed over night. The temperatures had fallen back to below freezing. (I have no doubt now the ground is still frozen.) Shivering birds were huddled together in trees. My garden tools were deserted and lonely in the garage.