New foliage is so vibrant. Our forest practically glows with the yellow-green of new leaves. Our landscape was so different at the beginning of May. These last two weeks have almost made the grey winter seem like a distant memory. Click on the image for a larger view.
I went out to our field last night to see the sunset. To my surprise, two beautiful horses trotted up to me, apparently looking for something to eat. They soon lost interest when they realized I had no food. Click on the image for a larger view.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
The spring foliage of young trees in our field. The foliage is white because the image was taken in the near infrared. Chlorophyll is highly reflective in infrared. Click on the image for a larger view.
May is here. We are starting to see this years foliage. The early green is so vibrant compared to the darker greens of summer. These particular trees are in Bates-Morse Mountain Conservation Area in Phippsburg, Maine. Click on the image for a larger view.
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.
Our 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.
At 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.
Our apple trees are in bloom. We have several varieties, but the blossoms are surprisingly similar—the foliage has greater variety. These particular blossoms are on a tree we call Midori-chan. Click on the image for a larger view.
The 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.