How does a self-professed gardening nut crack the doldrums of still another bone-chilling, drizzly spring day? First, by ignoring her long list of gardening to-dos and instead, taking notice of antics of two competing American robin pairs who have daily turf wars on and over the front lawn – one pair busily nest building in a rhododendron adjacent to the front porch and the other defending a longer-established nest in a side-yard mountain laurel. The front lawn, situated between the two nests, serves as stage for daily red-breast to red-breast – who’s the better/stronger/bigger – male Olympics. Meanwhile, the females busily collect any remaining strands of ornamental grass and fill their beaks with softer blades of brown lawn grass left over from heavy winter snows … flying back and forth, ground to nest, ignoring the territorial jousts that males only interrupt for worm-catching intermissions.
My doldrums further declined when I caught a brief glimpse of a Ruby-throated hummingbird – the first this season – slowing its fly-by only slightly, as it took stock of a hanging pot of pansies.
But when I headed outside – camera in hand, donning rain coat and my trusty pair of L. L. Bean water-proof slip-ons – the chilly, damp outside world opened its wonders … all I had to do was look.
Nearer the house, a patch of Lady’s Mantle collected raindrops in its leaves.
Newly opened blooms of white lilac caught the lens’ eye.
White lilac blossoms
Bright white Sweet Woodruff blossoms lit up the base of a red-twig dogwood.
In the nearby woods, the one and only, but highly prized Eastern Red Columbine (Aquilegia Canadensis) had opened … siting, protected, under a long-ago fallen tree, thereby avoiding the trampling hoofs of wandering deer and any unintentional human stomps.
Eastern Red Columbine
Ferns unfurled, reaching fronds skyward.
Tiny May-apple leaves emerged from moss blankets.
May-apple and moss
I didn’t intend to get caught up in the misty quiet of a wet late afternoon … I actually went outside to grab a few Alpine strawberry photos, but these will hold for a future post. Today belonged to unanticipated pleasures.