Early blooms

photo by Ann E. Michael

Quince blossoms.

The strangely warm weather around this equinox has sped spring along. Above, one of my favorite ornamental shrubs, a quince (Chaenomeles speciosa) in the named variety “Tokyo Nishiki.” I love its pale blossoms that lack the orange-y hue of the more common varieties of chaenomeles.

While it’s lovely to see the sun, blue skies, and so many flowers, it is worrisome because an open winter requires–in our temperate region–a rainy spring to make up for the lack of snow-melt. Instead, we are three inches below the average precipitation for March. It is unusual to have to water the spinach bed; usually, I am instead dealing with sprouts that pop up far from the intended rows because heavy rains have dislodged them.

Of course, everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it, as the old saying goes. I am just going to wait and see what happens. Will we get our blackberry frost? Will it be a hard frost that kills off the redbuds and damages the early blossoms? Will we get a freak April blizzard to bookend our freak October blizzard? Or will we have a dry, too-warm spring that means the daffodils wilt early, few blossoms in May, and a tough summer for food crops?

I have some thoughts about gardening in drought years, but I am crossing my fingers that maybe we will get spring rains after all.

Anyone know a rain dance, chant, or prayer?

4 comments on “Early blooms

  1. We may have to turn to the native Americans for a rain dance, but I do pray that there is enough rain across this land to help the land produce.


  2. Sigrun says:

    there might be something strange going on with the weather – but the flowers look fantastic!


  3. KM Huber says:

    Rain needed in Florida as well. We don’t even have humidity, which is quite odd as well. However, the flowers are beautiful.



    • Karen, I know Florida’s aquifer is in trouble. Low humidity’s not a good thing down there, either. Coincidentally, my upcoming book contains quite a few poems about water, and about drought. These are things I dwell upon.


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