This week the garden is hanging onto the cusp between late winter and (very) early spring – the sun, when it appears, is quite warm but the air is not at all warm and when the wind blows, especially off the river which is still frozen, it is decidedly cold.

Last week we wrote about the final appearance of snowdrops and the very, very first crocuses … since when they have been joined by a larger clump of purple flowers that survived a very heavy day-long blattering by rain and ice-pellets on the first day of the month.

The Fox Sparrow put in a third, and final appearance but has now departed, presumably for nesting territory to the north. On the other hand a couple of Song Sparrows have arrived and have been fossicking around for several days. they look particularly fine sitting in the dogwood bushes with their bright red stems.

The pond is now mostly ice-free so its pump and waterfall can be set up in a couple of weeks.

Lastly – and a good note – the male Northern Cardinal has been seen giving seeds to the female and as far as we can see, the pair of Song Sparrows are a “pair”.

Crocus after rain

Fox Sparrow

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Trying to hasten the spring …

The squirrels did some late winter pruning and nipped off the tip off a branch on our front garden Magnolia tree … carefully trimmed and posed in a vase on the kitchen window we hoped, but didn’t really expect, that it would flower.

It came indoors as a tightly furled and furry collection of buds but it seems that the warmth has done the trick. Whether or not it will eventually become a fully open flower only time will tell, but for now this is rather attractive and a harbinger of good days ahead.