Saturday, January 26, 2008

Thoughts of Spring on a Winter Day

In this morning’s newspaper we enjoyed an article by Bonnie Holub. In it she wrote:

We don't have groundhogs in Wakulla County, so maybe we could choose another wildlife weather predictor. The first burrowing animal that comes to mind is the gopher tortoise. Maybe our gopher could be called Sopchoppy Bill, and he could predict the onslaught of yellow fly season. A shadow heralds a few more weeks of bug-deficient weather. No shadow, and yellow flies soon swarm.

tortoise sign 

This got us to thinking about our serious need to replace groundhogs, locally.

What about a turkey as a forecaster for Florida’s political future? If he sees his shadow, the legislature will finish its work on time. If he does not, there will be a special session later in the year. We’ll call him Tallahassee Tom.

What about a beaver (a close relative to the groundhog) to predict the construction of a new holding pond in your neighborhood?

Or a class guinea pig to predict whether or not the school will remain on Florida's “A” list?

Or a vulture to predict whether or not the hurricane season will be a bad one.

From here, our minds wandered to true signs of spring in our area:

A cut muscadine will drip sap

Red clover covers the roadsides

The henbit (weed) covers the lawn in purple

Redbuds, cherries and maples bloom

Daffodils bloom in yards and in places that were once yards

Jessamine paints some tall trees yellow while the wisteria works its lavender magic

Tomato plants and other summer annuals start showing up in the garden centers-- actually long before the last frost!

Robins are gone.

The buzzards quit congregating in the tops of the hickories across the cul-de-sac in the early morning sun

Swallow-tail kites, Mississippi kites and hummingbirds return for nesting

Manatees start showing up in the St. Marks and Wakulla rivers

But the sure sign is when pecan trees leaf out. They won’t be fooled.

Oh, yeah, and the Red Cross Sign says its “only 120 days until hurricane season! Are you prepared?”



David said...

Tallahassee Tom :) I like it...

I have yet to see the flocks of Robins this year that showed up last year. Maybe still too early?

threecollie said...

So many beautiful photos! Stopped by from Pure Florida and I am glad I did!

Katie said...

I like the animal prognosticators!! Maybe St. Augustine should have a mean cat that predicts whether we'll have enough airplanes! A bite on the leg = 6 more weeks of busy season.