Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Spring? It's Just a Rumor

So, here it is,  the first week of Spring, and we are cleaning up after a major snowstorm again.  Ah, Wisconsin.  Gotta love it or go stark raving mad. 
Dave's car, stuck in the driveway this morning, March 23.
 I choose to love it.  One thing about Spring around here, it is always unpredictable.  

This past Saturday we hit temps in the upper 40's which is what passes for balmy temperatures for us.  Ann stopped in for a visit and wanted to know if we felt like working outside since it was such a nice day.   There were just a few snowbanks left from winter, but the rest of the garden was defrosted, so off to work we went.

The first task at hand was to cut back all the ornamental grasses.  I never realize how many grasses we have until it's time to whack them down. Cutting the grasses down is one way to get ready for the growing season; the other way is a whole lot faster:

Kids, don't try this at home.

In the video above, Ann sets fire to a big clump of 'Heavy Metal' panicum which burns at a moderate rate.  (The video quit before the grass burned down entirely.)  On the other hand, calamagrostis 'Karl Foerster' goes up like a rocket; nothing burns faster. 

It's a good idea to have a hose handy if it's dry out before we break out the cigarette lighter, and any grass too close to a building or a tree would not be a good candidate either, obviously.  One spring Joel and I were burning grasses down and the wind switched and turned a nearby Dwarf Alberta Spruce into a toasted marshmallow facsimile.  Surprisingly, the tree recovered, they are tough.

Carl, Ann and I spent the afternoon on Saturday cutting back sedum clumps and grasses and yes, I finally took down my Christmas decorations. (Shhhhhh....don't tell anyone, I know it's March, but I couldn't get to them before this, the snow was too deep.)

Yesterday the driveway was clear of snow and drying up nicely---above, the Girls are enjoying the sunshine, but oh, what a difference 24 hours makes:

The same spot in the driveway, minus the Girls.  They spent the day in their coop.

  This was the heaviest, wettest snow we have had all winter, and the trees are all hanging down.
Though it's hard to see from this picture, the water in the Quarry is open and rising.
The snow started falling Tuesday morning while I was out for my walk.  It wasn't snow, actually, but more like sleety pellets bouncing off my noggin as I sped along as fast as I could.  Dave had dropped me off about two miles from home on his way to tech school so I could walk with the wind at my back.  Whenever we have a northeast wind as strong and damp as that wind felt, we're in for a lot of snow.  The meteorologists were right again.  All day long the snow started and stopped, but by last night around 10PM, it was getting serious about sticking around.  The weathermen were also predicting 'Thundersnow' and by golly, they were right about that, too.  We had a lot of lightning and thunder and I was running around the house unplugging all the computers and other electrical stuff we didn't want to see destroyed.  It was quite the light show. 

So, I spent most of the day running the snow blower again.  From 1:30 to 5:30 I was out trying to clear the snow off the driveway.  Of course, I was almost done when the town plow came through and shoved the driveway shut again.  Oh, well, I love to be outside.  At least I had the snow removed enough so Carl and Joel could get their cars in the driveway when they got home from work.
Sneaky Carl taking pictures of me again.
The only pictures I have of flowers are of the Rose lamp installed on the ceiling:

One of these days, we'll have some real flowers to show.  

But not for awhile.


Alison said...

Oh dear! What a terrible tease Spring is. Letting you think it was here to stay, and then allowing Old Man Winter to take another whack at ya!

Sandy said...

I'm having trouble seeing all this snow still up north... I have photos of Mr. and Mrs. Finch building their nest near my back door.. I'll post it this week.. might help you feel Spring is around, Somewhere!
Keep the faith...

Darla said...

You are such a good sport! I would be pulling mine and my husband's hair out.

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Karen,

We got a small amount of snow last night but the roads are very icy. You really got hit.


FlowerLady said...

Wish we could send some of our heat your way, to melt the snow. Can't believe you just got another load dumped on you.

Your rose shade against the ceiling is absolutely stunning!!!

Hang in there Karen, pretty soon you'll be out playing in your wonderful, lovely gardens.

Love and hugs ~ FlowerLady

Bonnie said...

I feel your pain! One week ago our temps reached 60 and I was working in my garden. Today, the ground is covered in snow, but not as much as you have. I never thought of burning the tall grasses - I might try that this year. Thanks for the idea!

Larry said...

I think your rosebush may well be your best shade to date... really effective! L

xoxoxo said...

Those roses sure beat a few Crocus'!!
And I just have to say: Bwahahahahahahahahhahah!
You get to BURN your grasses down! That I am supremely jealous of.
Maybe that is why your houseplants die--they are afraid of you!

Tootsie said...

I am with you with the spring missing thing! Snow sucks A$$....and we are getting a lot of it....still....I am waiting on spring to show up....and not patiently either!

Zoey said...

OMG, that rose lamp is stunning!

It looked pretty much the same here yesterday morning. We got lucky and last night's storm stopped about an hour south of us.

Everyone is complaining that it's spring and we are getting what's new? It happens every year, so I don't get too upset.

Tufa Girl said...

I just love a grass clump a-blazing! It is what Mother Nature would do. Crazy, crazy spring weather. No apologies needed for the lack of blooms when you have such beautiful art to show us. Those roses are fabulous. BTW - next time take photos of the Christmas decorations - it's March - those photos are worth a lot of points!

Toni - Signature Gardens said...

Oh, wow, that looks like that could get a gardener down for a few days. Hopefully it will be gone soon and you can get back to burning grasses. That is one interesting way to address the task. Not sure I could get away with that in the city limits.

Rosemary said...

The spring rumour was here too but now we are buried under snow and freezing rain....... Love the rose light beautiful!

Sall's Country Life said...

Jeesh you got a lot of snow! Glad you can stay so chipper! It's turned cold here too but not much for new snow, still working on the original piles. Love that lamp! Your indoor/winter time was spent well!! Hang in there spring is still coming???