I love this time of year- noticeable changes surround us almost too quickly to take it all in! I noticed my first sighting of coltsfoot on Sunday when I took my first bike ride of the year around the "horn" - about a ten mile loop between two river bridges. Coltsfoot looks a lot like yellow dandelions except it has a flatter bloom and distinctive, almost segmented stems and foliage. It often grows along the edge of roads- I saw a good sized clump across from the drive to the lumber store, 88BC.
My crocus are in full bloom and the honey bees are busy gathering pollen- I think they are equally excited about the return of warmer weather! Lots of little flies are hovering about, too. When we visited a New Paltz garden center on Saturday I couldn't resist buying a pack of violas and also pansies- my first porch plants of the season!
Yesterday, I submitted two assignments for the summer issue to Pat Stone, editor of GreenPrints, a quarterly gardening magazine filled with gardening stories and accompanying illustrations. One's about an actress who left NYC and found more drama in her San Francisco garden. The other story I illustrated was about a round tool-like stone that contributing editor, Becky Rupp, found in her garden among the poppies. She added it to her garden tote and uses it often while speculating about its history and possible use by stone age gardeners. Happily, Pat accepted my drawings with no changes needed.
There is no end of things to do outside these days and I find myself flitting from place to place eagerly trying to do a little bit of everything- raking, weeding, getting the garden ready for planting...I happily discovered three rows of hyacinths emerging when I raked a back garden Sunday afternoon. The weather is warm enough to hang laundry outside again and it smells great, too.