Compressed Spring

This week, we jumped from winter to summer. From temperatures in the 40s and 50s to 80s and record-breaking 90s. The flowers and trees are bursting out in a massive explosion rather than a gentle progression.

Two weeks ago, the only color we saw on trees would have been this:

Evergreen holly with berries

Evergreen holly with berries

And on flowers like this:

Can you find the Chipping Sparrow among the daffodils?

Can you find the Chipping Sparrow among the daffodils?

But now? Well, let’s see what else yesterday’s walk revealed. All these photos, including the two above, were taken then.

Not far from my home we have these magnolias:

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A minute later, and I’m walking on the trail to the big park near us. The pears normally flower before the leaves are too far along. But extremes like we’ve had will set them closer together, as you can see in the second of these two photos:

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Continuing up the path we have redbud and forsythia. Normally these would be early bloomers, before the magnolias (and cherries).

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The birds were singing and flitting about. I think they appreciated the cooler temperatures and rain we had earlier in the morning. A Northern Mockingbird played hide-and-seek with me as I tried to take his photo:

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I stopped on the way home to take a few photos of my favorite flowering tree, the cherry:

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Not all flowering trees are blooming yet. The crabs are still budding. But I bet we’ll see them opening within a few days. This time of year is my favorite, even if the pollen levels mean I should take my leave from this post to take some allergy pills.

Happy weekend, everyone!

48 thoughts on “Compressed Spring

  1. You had me with magnolia’s. LOL! I hope you have some relief from allergies though. We the arrival of warmer weather, heavy yellow pollen covered everyone’s cars. A couple of nights ago, we had a storm. Now everyone’s happy it washed away the pollen from the cars. LOL! Here’s to blogging outdoors! 😉

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    • I’m hard-pressed to choose a single favorite flowering tree (besides the cherry), but magnolias are up there! Last night, I woke up a few times with a sinus headache, which is all too common for me when trees are pollinating. But I love Spring and all those flowers, so I’ll put up with the scratchy eyes and headaches. It shouldn’t be long before we have that coating on all of our cars, too. 😉

      Time to break out the bikes!

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  2. And our weather had just dropped from the 90s to the 70s. Soon it will get down to the 50s. What a wonderful planet! Your photos are lovely – the sparrow was so well camouflaged. Enjoy the warmer weather.

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    • Fall is my second favorite season after Spring. I handle the milder temperatures much more than the heat and cold. After my “winter blahs” posts, I had to do something cheery! There was a large flock of those sparrows flitting all around, so I was glad to see one of them sat still long enough for a photo op. 😉

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    • I’m not thrilled with all the side effects of the pills, but I can only take headaches for so long. 😉 Luckily, I don’t get the nonstop sneezing and runny nose. I think that would be worse.

      Flowers are just a cheery way to start the weekend, aren’t they?

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  3. We’re still waiting on our spring colors, but they’ll be here soon. I love when the white and pink flowering trees in our yard come to life. Yet I have no idea what they’re called…

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    • Flowering pear and hawthorns are popular white-flowering trees back in the Midwest. As are thousands of varieties of pink-flowering crab apples. Spring seems late across most of the northern US this year. We’re finally at an “average” weekend of upper 60s. This evening I’ll try Allegra-D to see if that works better than plain Sudafed…. I’m hoping I won’t have to switch to something prescription-level.

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      • Yes, plain Sudafed doesn’t have the anti-histamine in it–it’s just a decongestant. And allergies and histamine go together like peanut butter and chocolate. 🙂

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  4. Good to hear things are picking up. Same happening over here. Not quite the same in bloom feeling, but the temperature is on the up. Nice magnolia shots. I hope mine flowers soon. 🙂

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    • So much is being “smooshed” together for us. The magnolias are usual about now, but the redbud and pears should really have been earlier. The shot of summer temperatures this last week really got things going, though. Hope you’ll see some nice spring weather for those magnolias to have a long, extended bloom!

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  5. What a wonderful post with absolutely glorious photographs! 🙂 What a beautiful walk you must have been on. It was on the news last night that millions of £ have been lost this year in the flower/garden industry. The temperatures have been so low that they’ve not managed to sell the bulbs/flowers. Very sad. It’s a lot warmer here today too, which is such a relief!

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    • I wouldn’t be surprised if our garden sales are lower than normal, too. Last year, people were doing a lot of planting in March. But this year, it was just too cold. I saw a lot of folks stocking up this morning at the stores, though, so maybe there will be a catch-up period now.

      In a good year, the flowering trees run a beautiful transition from March into June. This year, I think it’ll be a lot shorter. 😦 Still, they’re beautiful no matter what. I hope you’ll soon have some opportunities for similar walks and photos!

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    • I love cherries. Alas, some are already losing their petals because of the hot days we had. Back in the 60s this weekend, but the “push” probably won’t be stopped. At least the flowering crabs and dogwoods will still be a bit later. This afternoon, the flowers will be joined by the smell of hops as my husband brews a batch of stout. 😉

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  6. Your pictures are great! Glad spring finally found you. We have all the same trees and things here, it seems, except our spring is still coming in gently, and will probably take its time until June. I’m just hoping for more rain. It seems very dry so far, which does not bode well for summer.

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    • I love it when Spring can actually last for several months. We’ve had a good run of years like that, so I shouldn’t complain too much that this one will be shorter. And I really hope you and everyone else who needs rain will get enough this spring. You need those reservoirs to refill and a break from those summer wildfires.

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  7. Beautiful. We’re still a bit behind you in the blooming stage. Everything up here is still in bud form, but we’re expecting a warm week so hopefully the flowers will open up. I couldn’t believe we actually got some of that sleet yesterday! Luckily it didn’t stick, but it was icy enough that the sand trucks were out.

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    • My sister-in-law said they had some snow this morning in northern Illinois. That’s really getting late in the season, even for there. Spring really hasn’t wanted to come north this year, has it? I think we’ve finally turned the corner here, and hopefully you will, too, this week. It’s time for bright colors and lighter-weight clothes!

      My Muse might be coming back from her tropical beach, too. Meghan and I have been working on a “real” opening to her first mystery and cleaning it up for a complete story, rather than a weekly blog format. I hope that means new ideas are also on the way. 😉

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  8. I absolutely love magnolias. JM! Just the look of all these flowers wanted to make me sneeze (LOL). Make sure you get into those allergy pills soon. These pictures are fantastic! 😀

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    • Yeah, much as I love them, all these beautiful flowering trees take their toll on me. 😉 It’s almost time to take another pill. But after some of my cranky winter posts recently, I thought readers might like a nice break. 🙂 And since the pollen can’t travel through the interwebs, even fellow allergy sufferers can enjoy them without sneezing or succumbing to sinus pressure!

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  9. Just love flower photos (as you might’ve guessed from my blog). The flowers I miss the most from up north are the lilacs. Lovely photos. Thanks for sharing them.

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    • I don’t see many lilacs around here. They were really common back in Illinois, but I think we have so many options here that people don’t go for them as much. After all my gloomy winter posts, I thought readers deserved a colorful break. 😉

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  10. Beautiful shots JM! Spring is bursting around us. My allergies are bad too. 😉 But I love the cherry blossoms. One of my favorite college memories in DC was the Jefferson Memorial Walkway. So many gorgeous cherry blossoms.

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    • Today wasn’t too bad, but I did take an Allegra-D this morning, and that may have helped. 😉 The cherry blossoms are just beautiful. We went down to the Tidal Basin our first Spring here and couldn’t believe how many people were there. Too many for my husband. 😉 Luckily, lots of them get planted in yards and parks, so we still get some spectacular shows. When we buy another house, I want a cherry tree in the yard. 🙂

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  11. So great to see those signs of Spring. We are also behind you here in CT, though every time I see a rare burst of color here or there I get so excited!!! Even if it means that everyone I know, including me, is sniffling, sneezing, has runny eyes and noses. I am not complaining! Trust me, I’d rather have the allergies along with signs of Spring over that winter we just had 🙂 Happy Spring!!!

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    • Happy Spring to you, too! I can’t believe it’s too far away for you. My allergies aren’t as bad as some people’s, so maybe I can appreciate the flowers a bit more than they do. 😉 It’s a little cool and cloudy today, but the rest of the week is supposed to be in the 70s and sunny. Fingers crossed!

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  12. After such a long hard winter, I suppose it’s churlish to complain of a spring overload – so I’m glad you were able to capture a season’s glories on one day, ’cause it looks as if you’re right, it won’t last long JM !

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    • It’s amazing how quickly the trees are leafing out now. The grass is deep green and growing, and the birds are singing everywhere. I may have a bit of a sinus headache, but I’ll gladly put up with that for the color I now see outside my office window! If spring flowers were with us year round, we probably wouldn’t appreciate them as much as we do. So I’ll take the shorter season this year and enjoy it while I can.

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  13. Gorgeous photos, here, JM! I love the mix to the usual story/text in my blog feed. 😀

    The trees and plants are certainly beautiful – we’re seeing them, here, as well – but, I am genuinely concerned about what these rollercoaster-ing weather conditions are doing to the flora in the long run. Nature is likely more resilient than I’m giving it credit, here. Still, I can’t help but lament the loss of a real spring, if nothing else.

    Even with all that, though, it looks like you were graced with lovely scenery for a long weekend walk, always a good thing. 😀

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    • The temperatures this week are more springlike, but like you, I wonder what our changing climate will do to the seasons in the various parts of the country. I’d hate to lose spring and fall. I know plants and animals have adapted for millions of years, but not all species survive change. I’d hate to know that some of my favorites wouldn’t make it.

      Still, Life is resilient, and spring is the perfect time to see that. Now, if only computers were…. I’m trying to resuscitate my husband’s ancient (5 year old) computer this afternoon with no success. I’m stuck in a loop of chkdsk, welcome screen, blue screen of death detailing various crashes, followed by restarts. This doesn’t look good!

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    • They don’t have any real fragrance that I can pick up. Maybe just a hint of something if you bury your nose in them. And if I did that, I’d probably get a splitting sinus headache. 😉 They and the pears are already losing their petals—a short season this year. But the dogwoods and crabs are starting to bloom, so we still have some colorful days to go.

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  14. It took me a while to find that bird, he blends in well.
    The photographs are beautiful. The temperatures here have risen and the rosemary on the mountain sides is in bloom now.

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    • Oh, I love rosemary! It can grow in protected areas around here, but you don’t see a lot of it. I thought of your falcon post when I realized I’d caught this little guy in the photo. 😉

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  15. Lovely photos, it kind of looks quite like England around where you live! Even though the temperatures aren’t particularly warm here yet, I’m just pleased to not have to wear 6 layers every day!

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  16. It was cloudy and a bit drizzly when I took these photos. That might have added an “English” air to the area. 😉 We’ll be cooling down again this weekend, so summer may still be a month down the line. I certainly hope so. I’d love some pleasant temperatures before the heat and humidity strike. And may your temperatures begin warming to a comfortable level, too!

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  17. Those are lovely photos. I think it’s cool that you can identify the plants as well. I’m not very good with that, which is a shame, as my grandfather was an amateur botanist with a few patents. Myself, I haven’t had much luck with anything other than carnivorous plants (flytraps, sundews, pitcher plants, etc.).

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    • To be honest, there are quite a few I couldn’t identify. But I enjoy seeing them, and they help bring me out of the winter doldrums. I don’t think I’d have the talent or patience to develop new varieties like your grandfather did. But maybe you inherited a bit of those skills with the carnivorous plants. Just so you’re not working on something along the lines of “Little Shop of Horrors” ….

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    • We’ve got a while to go before crape myrtles bloom. Ours run more summer into fall. The dogwoods are really going, and azaleas are just beginning. I may have to deal with allergies, but it’s worth it for the show. Thanks for stopping by!

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