March is here

– Posted in: Weather

“In like a lion, out like a lamb” was what I was taught in grade school, and back then, when I lived on Long Island and then in the Maryland suburbs, it made sense. Around here, March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lion, and, if you’re lucky, you get a few lamb-like days in between.

March has the reputation for the worst blizzards and the most rapid thaws, so I prefer to borrow the line from T.S. Eliot: March is the cruelest month. Maybe it’s the increasing strength of the sunshine, but it seems your body knows it should be spring, yet all the eye can see is piles of dingy snow everywhere. Right now the driveway has mostly melted off, but we are supposed to get 1 to 3 inches of snow tomorrow, so we’ll see how long that lasts. Having the driveway (which was gravel when we moved in, and has pretty much deteriorated to dirt by now) clear of snow and ice means easier forays into and returns from civilization, an essential component of reducing cabin fever. “Take two trips to visit friends, and call me in April.”

Call me an optimist, but after I walked down the driveway and put a letter in the mailbox, I tramped through the snow in my sneakers and checked out the location of my earliest blooming snowdrops, but they’re still buried under about a foot of snow. What did I expect? Well, I was hoping that snowdrops, at least, my snowdrops, were like skunk cabbage and could melt through snow. No such luck–at least, not today.

About the Author

Kathy Purdy is a colchicum evangelist, converting unsuspecting gardeners into colchicophiles. She would be delighted to speak to your group about colchicums or other gardening topics. Kathy’s been writing since 4th grade, gardening since high school, and blogging since 2002.

In the end, this may be the most important thing about frost: Frost slows us down. In spring, it tempers our eagerness. In fall, it brings closure and rest. In our gotta-go world–where every nanosecond seems to count–slowness can be a great gift. So rather than see Jack Frost as an adversary, you could choose to greet him as a friend.

~Philip Harnden in A Gardener’s Guide to Frost: Outwit the Weather and Extend the Spring and Fall Seasons

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