March 19 – Our various fruit trees and bushes are coming into bloom and the apricots are dropping their petals already. The purple magnolia is blooming, and the small plum tree will soon be covered with white blooms. Our pear trees all have flower buds showing, and the bees were very busy this week on the heavily-flowered Nanking bush cherries.Chris and I took a walk around our trails earlier this week, and encountered two snakes along the way – a small garter snake and what I thought first was a turtle swimming in the pond. There was just a rather small reptilian head showing about the surface of the water and I remarked to Chris that there was a turtle swimming. When it arrived at the other side of the pond, it seemed to be getting longer and longer and thinner and thinner, until the turtle had turned into a water snake two or three feet long.
Chris’ sore side is getting better as she cut rose bushes, and I hope she did not overdo her exercising while walking. She was surprised to find she had been attacked, twice, by ticks that she found crawling on her neck. Ticks, this early in the year? In another month or so there will be chiggers too, which are even worse than ticks.Plants continue to rise out of the ground, and I saw that our single rhubarb plant had sent up a couple of leaves and a bud, and a hyacinth was blooming. In a couple of our peony beds there were a few reddish buds showing above ground.
Our bamboo patch is still dormant but come April or May there will be many shoots coming up out of the adjacent lawn and they will have to be mowed off for a month or so until there are no new ones appearing. This week I gathered a small bundle of dry ones from the big mound in our barn, cut them to 4 or 5 feet in length, and tied them together and will take them to the thrift store in Pleasant Hill to be sold to some gardener for garden stakes.
We played a few games of Rummikub before heading for bed and will now get a much-needed rest. So good-night all! – DALE