Out in the woods, the delicate pink blossoms of the hepatica are scattered about the back meadow, along with pale purple wood violets. The fiddle heads of ferns are unfurling, and the wild ramps accompany them along the back of the barn. Barn swallows compete with bluebirds for the birdhouse nearest the garden gate. In the small orchard by the chicken coop, the pear trees blossomed today, the sour cherry trees are almost ready to bloom, and the tiny apple blossom clusters are tinged a deep pink, just waiting to burst open!
A peek at the vegetable garden shows two spears of asparagus poking up out of the soil. I picked a large bowlful of spinach this afternoon, and chopped up some chives and got them in the dehydrator. I also finished dehydrating the nettles I gathered yesterday... so far I've gotten one whole gallon of packed, dried nettles for tea and tossing into fall and winter soup.
The peepers still call from the marshy places in the fields and woods. Salamanders can be spotted floating near the top few inches out back in the pond, and while gathering rocks this evening to finish a stone border around the windmill, I came across a few black and yellow salamanders under the stones, as well as a small garter snake. The black flies were pesky enough as the humidity increased tonight, and by the time I finished the chores and settled into the porch swing, it began to rain. As I finish this, the first thunderstorm of the season is winding down, and with it, the anxiety eases for my poor old husky, who even at 14, with failing eyesight and hearing, is still frightened by the flashing lightning.