Tag Archives: spring

What tennis golf and spring have in common

Yep. Spring is here. Skeptics will argue the point that this can’t be true because of the weather — snow flurries one day, 60 degrees and sunny the next, tornado watches another day, and so much rain that even the ducks are complaining.

And yes, all that is true. But really, aren’t those all just signs of spring…at least in Ohio?

But here’s the thing: I work at a university and there is one sure sign of spring that overrides all others. The tennis golfers are out in full force. That resounding THWACK of the ball being smacked across the campus green, followed by cheers of “FORE! clearly suggests one thing: spring has sprung. That and the fact that you might want to wear protective headgear.

There are, of course, other sure signs….

Flowering pear tree

Flowering pear tree

Hellebores

Hellebores

Miniature daffodils

Miniature daffodils

Hyacinths

Hyacinths

Parsley survived the winter!

Parsley survived the winter!

Early morning sun glinting on the National Quarry

Early morning sun glinting on the National Quarry

Peach-center daffodils

Peach-center daffodils

Lovage

Lovage

Finding beauty in an dreary week of February

January and I don’t get along. Let’s just say I’m SO glad when February arrives because at least there is Valentine’s Day to celebrate and then you’re halfway through the month!

But okay. Enough is enough. It’s time for February to morph into March. It’s the time of year when we’re ready for something…anything…that suggests a possibility that spring isn’t so far away. Let’s just say the last few weeks in our part of Ohio have been — for the most part — dreary, cold and wet, with a few beautifully sunny days to whet our appetites for better weather.
A stroll through the back yard revealed some highlights…my favorite was the parsley that survived the winter underneath the snow. And then there were these beauties:

The green tips of spring flowers poking their heads up through the ground.

The green tips of spring flowers poking their heads up through the ground.

Forsythia buds -- time to cut a few to bring inside to force for early yellow color!

Forsythia buds — time to cut a few to bring inside to force for early yellow color!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the midst of searching for spring, it occurred to¬† me that I should be able to find some beauty in the ordinary, so I began looking for unusual plants, grasses and pretty berries. The local florists will never have to worry about me horning in on their business. But channeling my late mother-in–law, who could make the most straggly stems appear beautiful, here’s what I came up with. Not bad, eh?IMG_0391[1]

Crocuses, parsley and forsythia, oh my

Isn’t it amazing how crocuses suddenly pop up? Yesterday, the warm weather sent me out of my stuffy office in the early afternoon. I just had to get out and enjoy the sun and warmth, so decided to walk home to check in on the husband and the dog. As I walked through the backyard, I was surprised to see some random crocuses blooming. Their bright yellow color immediately lifted my spirits and I began to look around the gardens for other signs of spring.

Little green shoots everywhere! Tulips, daffodils, hyacinths…and other plants I can’t identify until they bloom. The forsythia buds were starting to pop, so I clipped off a few stems to force indoors.

About this time, I found the dog dragging his master around the block…or maybe it was the other way around. I stuck a crocus in the dog’s face. Apparently, they don’t hold the same fascination for him as they do for me, or he was just disappointed that the yellow thing didn’t smell edible. The husband, on the other hand, was happy to see the crocus. As we stood there like two dummies, staring down at those tiny flowers, we wondered how it is that they surprise us every year. We wondered if we stood there long enough, would we be able to watch them grow and open? Maybe some botanists know how this works.

I snapped a picture with my phone and sent it to my daughters. One responded later on (yawning), that “Oh, I’ve seen them all over my neighborhood.” So much for that excitement.

Okay, so the arrival of the crocuses fell flat on the kid, but it sure got me inspired. Although the gardening catalogs have been filling our mailbox for several months now, I’ve not paid much attention to them. See, part of the problem is that a couple of my brothers are already eating from their gardens, but then that’s an unfair comparison. One has a farm with a greenhouse and the other one plants spinach in the fall so it’ll pop up early in spring. It’s a lot warmer in Virginia and Kansas.

If that smacks of sibling rivalry, it probably is. But hey, I’ve got crocuses. Bet they don’t. AND I have fresh parsley which recently poked up its head from under its winter blanket of snow.

Now I’m rambling, so it’s time to quit. Besides, those gardening catalogs are calling me. Time to build some new raised beds and get moving.

Isn’t it amazing what a little warm weather will do for the soul?