Friday, February 20, 2009

free samples

February in Atlanta is my most hated and most loved month. It can be cold and our best chance for snow is early February meaning that usually we have cold rainy days this time of year. We had 17° temps with a windchill of 1° at the start of February this year. But, just as the Midwesterner in me starts to feel hopeless about winter and convinced that the sun may never return, and I begin to think I should get treatment for Seasonal Affective Disorder, then Atlanta starts giving us free samples of spring. Really- it hit 71° and stayed near there for several days just a week later and other than the tornado day, we've had some good warm days. Waking up to 26° this morning, I have trouble believing that I opened the windows to hear the birds just a few days ago.

It will get warm again soon and then it will surely freeze again. Our last frost date is not until April 10. The flower buds on my neighbor's cherry tree have frozen and turned brown since their January bloom. (But they still look great on my desktop!) You'd think the plants would be used to this treatment and they'd hold back just to be sure. But no. They take their chances and they bloom. Optimists. The chipmunks must have talked to the groundhog up north because they're out and dashing to pick up sunflowers the sloppy birds have dropped before the squirrels get them all. Our southern groundhog predicted more cold.

I once hand carried a just-bloomed daffodil on a plane and through Canadian customs so I could share it with a friend's mom when I visited for his wedding. Daffodils may be my favorite bloom, coming so early and so loudly. There are other blooms around here already- winter daphne, quince, forsythia. But none of them bring as much attention to themselves as does one bright yellow daffodil. Which is why I like to see this when I look in my front yard:


  1. Ours won't begin to bloom for at least another month! They aren't even poking up in the soil yet. The tulips are just beginning to peek through, though. I can't wait! I'm ready to trade in my stocking cap, mittens, wool scarf and heavy coat for an umbrella and slicker. Bring on the rain! :)

  2. I saw my first daffodil today. Our family was picking up roadside litter for a service project and it was my little reward during a rather nasty job. The real prize came when I found 2 packs of Van Gogh sunflower seeds from Renee's Garden and they're good through 2009. Those will be recycled in our garden. Our cool weather crops like snow peas, spinach and carrots are already in the ground. Oh hurry springtime.