Last year on this very date we were recovering from a snow storm that dumped feet of snow on us; I had to climb fences to get to my horses, as the gates wouldn't open in the deep snow. This year is in stark contrast, as yesterday I spent almost my entire day in a sweatshirt and muck boots, dividing berry bushes and digging holes for the 87 berry plants I've just ordered (Yikes. That number looks bigger when I type it here...)
Today I intend to spend my time doing the same, taking a break in the mid-day to grab lunch with my brother and then slogging out to tap some Box Elder trees in the hopes that this year produces at least a little sap run despite the bizarre weather.
The crazy thing is, things are actually starting to break hibernation in this heat wave! The peach tree buds have the tiniest bit of swell to them that, if I hadn't inspected them closely last week, I would never have noticed. I have to wonder how this is going to affect our fruit production state-wide, this year. I can't imagine it's going to be good.
Crazier still, when I went outside yesterday morning and checked the pussy willows, they were tightly closed, the buds showing only minimal swelling. By noon, however, six of them had begun to swell so much that they were bursting open! This weather is strange, indeed.
Are you experiencing unseasonably warm temperatures where you live? How are the plants and animals taking it?
(Also, has anybody ever tapped Box Elder trees? I just learned that they produce a delicious sap for syrup and our place is literally plagued by them!)