Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Not Yet, Not This Year. But Soon.

 The day I took this photo of Bloodroot was almost exactly a year ago, to the day.  Lots of other spring ephemerals were blooming then, too: Spring Beauty, Snow Trillium, Round-leaved and Long-spurred Violet, Spicebush, Leatherwood, Hepatica.  Flowers were everywhere!

Not this year, though.  This year on this date, snow still covers the ground, ice still covers the lake, and a wintry chill still lies like a pall upon the earth.  When I walked around Moreau Lake today, I still wore my winter boots, still wrapped a scarf around my ears to keep out the biting wind.

At the northern end of the lake, where sunshine can reach the shore all day, the ice has retreated a bit, and the sand was soft and dry underfoot.  I could see the runic squiggles of snail trails on the sandy bottom beneath the shallow water, and here and there a tiny minnow darted out of my sight beneath the thinning ice.  I felt encouraged to look around for further signs of spring.

Here's the den beneath a tree up high on a bank where we surprised a family of tiny fox cubs last spring.  It appears, by the new layer of damp sand overlying the dryer, that the den is undergoing renovation, and so we might hope for a new fox family here in the near future.

The buds of the Shadblow trees have been coppery bright all winter,  but today I noticed the scales were starting to part, and silky tufts of fluff were breaking out.

I had to search and search among the winter-ravaged leaves of Trailing Arbutus, but at last I found a few bundles of buds that looked as if they were only waiting for a bit of warmth to unfurl their fragrant waxy blooms.  Arbutus flowers can be pink or white.  It looks as if these will be pink.

As I rounded the end of the lake and neared where I'd parked my car,  the sun broke through and dazzled my eyes as it glinted off the snow.  It warmed my back, relaxing shoulders hunched against the cold.  Blue sky appeared in the west as black clouds moved away to the east, trailing wisps of rain across the distant mountains.

One of these days very soon, we will open our door in the morning and step out into Spring.


Uta said...

What a beautiful area you have to roam around in. It is just lovely.

June said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you.
You've given me that most precious of commodities, hope.

Anira Akmal said...

Your daily life is so meaningful... surrounded by wonderful nature! I hope you will always be healthy to give us inspired post.

catharus said...

That last photo is striking.