April 15, 2018

Rain, 31 Degrees, East Winds 10 – 15 mph.

Today is easily the worst day this year for walking. It rained much of the night, with a lot of that rain being frozen and piling up on the ground in a wet layer of frozen slush. It doesn’t look like it’s raining as I get ready to leave, but as soon as I get outside, I see that it is. I stow the camera in my bag and set out with Jamie.

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Note that these pictures were taken yesterday afternoon. They are covered in ice today.

Well, it’s either worse than it looked, or it’s starting to rain harder as I go. I am not dressed for rain, so my jacket and pants are quickly getting soaked as the wind drives the rain sideways into me. I quickly abandon the idea of walking all the way to the woods and take the shortcut through the school yard and into the woods behind there so Jamie can at least do his business.

I’m pretty well soaked by the time I get to the woods and I make the short loop and head back across the field for home. Jamie has lagged behind and comes running after a bit. That tells me that he’s stopped to poop and is happy about it.

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It looks like each bud, seen in pairs on the stem, is opening to three leaves.

We make the rest of the walk quickly, and head back to the house where I peel off my wet clothes and towel off Jamie before sitting down to write.

I’m bummed not to be able to take pictures again. The rain is just beginning to freeze on the trees and it might get interesting. Maybe if it stops raining later I’ll go out and have a look, but at the moment it doesn’t sound very appealing.

This is truly the worst weather that I can recall for April. April is normally a month when spring is coming on fast. May is perhaps the prettiest month of the year here, but April should provide a nice prelude. This year, it’s not.

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It looks like maybe the bud on the end of the twig has three sets of three leaves.

A couple of years ago, we had such warm weather in March that the trees bloomed early. They were eventually hit with a frost that killed most of the Apple crop in the state. It ruined the blooms on our Magnolia that year as well. This kind weather in mid-April is pretty unexpected, especially since we’ve only had a couple of days of warm weather all month. I don’t think this is unprecedented, but it is certainly unwelcome.

Yesterday afternoon, after the rain had stopped, I went out to photograph some tree buds that I noticed in the morning. They are exploding open and looking very lush and colorful, so I want to photograph them before they open further.

 

I’ve been following these buds since they were small. I’m looking forward to recording the entire process of their opening. I’m not sure if they will open fully, because they are on a branch that broke off of a tree about six weeks ago. I can’t believe they have grown and are opening without any nourishment from the roots of the tree.

The buds are quite complex now. There are many buds on each new twig and they are opening in a manner that is not entirely clear to me now. It looks like several leaves or flowers are coming out of each bud. I guess I will see what comes out soon—if the limb continues to support these buds.

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It’s unfortunate that most tree buds are too high up for me to get close up shots of them. This broken branch and a few lower branches I know of are the only opportunities I get. It would take quite a ladder to get at the many buds I see on the trees along the streets here.

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I wish I could get to them, because I’d like to see the differences between the various trees and the way they develop. I know there’s a Buckeye tree on my street and some Maples and Locusts, each of which would be nice to see up close.

I can get to a few Maple buds in my back yard and our Magnolia is within reach. I should also be able to get some shots of our Dogwood if it blooms this year.

That’s it for now. Maybe later I’ll get out, maybe not. It’s really no fun going out in this miserable stuff.

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