When I check the thermometer every morning and see temperatures down in the teens, it's hard to believe that it is indeed spring. But, on the way down to the barn, as the day is just dawning, I hear a Cardinal singing, and although the ground is still frozen, there is the faint smell of earth in the wind. Along the south wall of the cheeseroom the sun hits hard and strong, there are crocuses, tiny irises, and small star anemones in full bloom. The greenhouse is full of new growth. We've started lettuce, peppers, tomatoes, eggplants, onions, shallots, and various herbs. This weekend we start the first flowers, Asters, Acroclinium, Asclepias, Strawflowers, Verbena, Salpiglossis, Statice, Snapdragons and Salvia, to name a few.
Along with the lengthening days, and the promise of warmer weather, my Dad's birthday always ushers in spring for me. Perhaps it is because he was born on the 20th of March, his outlook on life has always been so optimistic. The idea that no matter the weather, all will work out, the days will get longer, the weather will improve. It's that attitude, I think, that helps me through the dark days of winter. I call it channeling my inner Dad.
Me and my Dad