Thursday, April 4, 2013

stirring dull roots with Spring rain

Ah, T.S. Eliot, April is the cruelest month. It's like spring has been put on pause this year. There was this sudden burst of life and then everything has been held in freeze frame since that moment. Last year by April the trees were in full leaf and I was planting my garden. This year? Not even close. I planted my spring seeds because I am afraid that I will miss spring if they don't get in the ground. But it is still close to freezing at night!

The Red Maple in front of my house
 This is the Red Maple (Acer rubrum) outside my house. I wish I had taken a photo of it a month ago. IT HASN'T CHANGED!

Oh a completely different note here is a fun botany fact. Do you know why the Red Maple is called the Red Maple? It wasn't until I became a plant nerd and talked incessantly at people about trees that I learned that many people think it is because the leaves turn red in the Autumn. Truth is, not every Red Maple has red leaves. It is because the flower buds are red in the Spring! You can see them in the photo.

I got out of work an hour early today so I went on a mini-hike in Fairmount Park with my dog. I guess I shouldn't say that nothing has happened this Spring, because the cherries are starting to flower. And yeah, I guess Washington DC has that whole "Cherry Trees are Awesome" thing on lock, but Kelly Drive is quite beautiful when the cherries come out.

The spring weeds are starting to bloom. Especially the Lesser Caladine (Ranunculus ficaria), which is such a noxious weed, but is SO SO PRETTY.
Horribly invasive plant. Such a pretty flower.
But you know something? Yeah, Diamond Dog and I passed the others in the dog park to stomp through the woods, but there is an upside to being the only botany nerd in the area. No one else comes into the weeds to see what's growing. And they don't see what the wind blows in either:
Botany Pays!

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