Sunday, March 10, 2013
52 Degrees And Shadows
Unusual sights are common as the snow disappears. This sculpture in the snow cried out for an explanation of its existence. A post and rail fence is between the sun light and the stone path here. Shadows of the rails insulated the snow from the warmth of the sun. Irregular melting created these very temporary lines of snow. They are gone now as nothing could protect them from today's warmth.
My trip home from Syracuse yesterday also provided unusual sights. It is common for working people to simply drive over small snowfalls between their houses and the highway. The resulting hard packed snow has a way of accumulating over the course of a winter. Warm days soften the deep deposit and it traps and holds car wheels securely. A back blade on a tractor was seen pulling these glaciers from the driveways at several rural homes. At one home, a woman was seen shoveling snow where the house roof had shed its burden on the homemaker's flower bed. It looked at first glance like she was shoveling to clear the lawn. More likely she was clearing a way for her spring bulbs to find daylight.
These spring bulb sprouts are in our shade garden. I planted them but no identifying record was written. Star of Bethlehem bulbs were planted someplace nearby but they flower during summer and might not be up this early. Winter aconites were twice planted in this general area but the first planting failed to grow during their first year in the ground. These may be the second planting. A protective cage protects these early sprouts from the foraging deer. More growth and flowers will identify these now unknown plants. We use small flat stones and permanent markers to make durable plant labels but how does one place a stone over newly planted bulbs? With growth present we can place the stone between the plants. For now we will frequently check for flowers or leaf structure to identify these plants for us.
This picture of our home grown tulips was taken two days ago after the most recent snowstorm. The oldest flower is flattening its petals in preparation for dropping them while the newly opened red and yellow blossom is tight. These bulbs provided us with colorful flowers just when we needed it most. At least we did not have to put the snow shovel to the ground to help these bulbs find daylight.