The equinox is still a few days away, but signs of spring have sprung up all around us in the past week or so. Pretty little wildflowers are starting to bloom in our yard and along the roads in the area. There are dogwood, redbud, ornamental pear and tulip magnolia trees in bloom in our neighborhood. We see leaves coming out on the sweet gum trees. There is yellow pine pollen in the air and lots of fuzzy seed cases are dropping from the elm trees.
Everything is waking up, including the weeds. The ash trees apparently had a fantastic year last year because there are hundreds of little ash trees coming up everywhere. I remember seeing a lot of the whirligig seed casings on the ground back in the fall, but I didn't think about the consequences at the time. The sprouts are easy to pull up when they are young, but there are so many of them that we have had to step up our weeding in the garden lately.
We planted our first round of squash seeds in one of the new rows a few days ago. Snap beans are next - I can hardly believe it! Everything is moving so quickly. We are planning to do five successive planting of squash, one per week, to stay ahead of the squash vine borers. We will cover them with insect barrier (floating row cover) until they start to bloom, then will have to uncover them to let the pollinators in.
The overwintered sugar snap pea plants are blooming again. The healthiest plant has three pea pods on it. I can't believe how quickly the pods have developed. Unfortunately, there are only a few of these older plants. We hope the new plants will start to bloom soon.
The weather has been just about perfect lately. We are keeping our fingers crossed that there will be no more freezes this spring. So far, the weather forecast looks great.