Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Curious natural rhythms

The rhythms of the natural world seem a bit askew here so far this fall and early winter, even among our native plants, but especially the Asian ones, many of which are starting to flower now, some months in advance of what they "normally" would in a place far afield from their genetic home (cherries, quinces, forsythia, and Jasminium...) 

Quince buds from spring, in a another year, down in the Piedmont
I'm hearing Carolina Wrens singing loudly, perhaps not unusually, but the frequency this time of year?  And the occasional male cardinal?

Hmm, at least there haven't been any daffodils yet -- they probably need at least a bit of cold before they are triggered to flower.  We'll see what (is now calendar) winter brings.  Normally I think of winter in the Carolinas of the Southern U.S. from mid-November to late February, since we often have warmer days in February, variable weather in March, and by April, we're solidly into spring, depending on any odd vagaries.

A former colleague, at the botanical garden in the Upstate of SC, was an old-timer, now gone -- in my early years there, he wouldn't plant warm-season bedding plants in the front display gardens until after May 1st.  I think those days are probably gone, too (along with planting bedding plants, as well).

The tulips that aren't prechilled, the hours of chilling needed for apples, and peaches -- well, how they fare remains to be seen in the months ahead.

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