A Spring Wind

A cold front moved our unseasonably hot weather out of Maine. Friday was a pleasant 70°F with a dry air and a strong breeze. This wind enwraps and enraptures us, as if the spirit of spring is inviting us to laugh and dance with the trees. Click on the image for a larger view.

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An Explosion of Green

Our forest has transformed. The top image was taken on May 12th. The middle image was taken on May 15th. On that day, the temperatures reached 70°F. Today was even warmer. That is the last picture. The blue sky is being hidden behind a canopy of green. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Sweet Crab in Bloom

Spring is such an amazing time of year. We have had months of a dry, brown landscape, and then, within a matter of weeks, the landscape transforms. After two days of rain, there was a break in the weather this evening. I went out to see our sweet crab apple tree. Not only do we enjoy its magnificent spring display, in the late summer, we can also harvest its fruit. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Spring Trillium

Red trillium, or wake robin, is appearing on the forest floor. It is one of the first flowers of the season, taking advantage of the light before the foliage returns. Trillium is a striking plant, but its scent of rotting meat is for a slightly different audience. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Daylily—Edible Plants

Our daylilies are emerging. While the daylily (hemerocallis fulva) is known as a decorative plant, it is also edible. This time of year we eat the young shoots by stir frying them in soy sauce and serving them on tofu. We harvest the shoots when they are only a few inches long. The ones pictured here would be a little too old. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Wild Plum, Spring Blossoms

This spring has been wet and gray. The foliage is just starting to appear on our trees. However, our wild plum has come into blossom. This is our messenger of spring. One corner of our land glows with these brilliant white flowers. As the blossoms mature, they turn a deep pink. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Receding Ice

Our forest floor. This has been a warm week and the snow pack has mostly receded from the forest. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Spring Thaw

Sunday was warm and sunny. Spring could be smelt in the air. This trend is expected to continue through the week. Winter finally seems in retreat. With the melting snow pack comes our vernal streams and ponds. This water is clear like glass. Click on the image for a larger view.

Blackberry in Bloom

life_in_maine_blackberry_in_bloomOur fruit plants are going through their annual flowering cycle. At the beginning of May, our wild plum was in bloom. The middle of may brought the blossoms out in our apple and peach trees. Now our blackberry canes are blossoming. These are in our field, but the blackberry under our forest canopy are also out. Click on the image for a larger view.

Celebrating Spring Revisited

life_in_maine_late_spring_panoAt the end of April, I was so excited about the arrival of spring. The flora was returning and the weather was warm. A month later, the forest is a rich mass of green. Oddly enough, in winter, the forest is spacious and full of light, yet there is an absence of life. Now, it is dark and closed, but full of the vitality. Click on the image for a different view.

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The First Foliage

life_in_maine_first_foliageThe emergence of the spring foliage always takes me by surprise. Not only in how fast it  happens—it seems like last week the trees were just beginning to bud—but also in the intensity of color. This evening’s sun seemed to make the forest glow in a burning green-yellow flame.

The other thing that caught my attention this evening was was the scent of new plants. While the air in winter is fresh and clean, it is rather sanitized. You seem to forget the world has a fragrance. And when I passed our lilac trees, the sweetness of the air was almost unreal. It is really nice to see spring taking hold. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Plum in Bloom

life_in_maine_plum_in_bloomOur wild plum are now in bloom. The trees cluster around an old ash at the entrance of our driveway. Since the forest has not come into foliage, the light from the setting sun strikes them in the evening. The bloom are still white, but they will turn pink as the leaves come out. In August, we can harvest the fruit. Click on the image for a larger view.

May Day 2016

life_in_maine_may_day_2016While the blossoms of our plum trees are still tightly closed, these opened today because of the microclimate created by their proximity to the ground. May 1st was warm, but overcast. Click on the image for a larger view.

Aaaaggh…

life_in_maine_snowYesterday was April 26th (not March 26th, although it looked like it). It snowed all day. This is a bit disheartening. Naomi and I hope the cold has not harmed the budding plants. We are supposed to go below freezing for the next few nights. The daytime temperatures should be in the 50s, which will help. Click on the image for a larger view.