04/13/2012

Spring Makes a Weird Entrance in Maine

These crocuses are still lookin' good

Like the rest of the country, Maine had a few freak days of summer-like heat. It was in the 80s for a few days in March. While in April this would normally induce a giddy euphoria, most Mainers were heard spouting End-Of-Days-like comments. We’re already used to being at the end of the earth, so the end of days is nothing unusual.

No sap from this red maple

Since then things have returned to normal. The heat shock brought a quick end to the maple sugar season, reason enough for some to reserve a condo in Oblivion, but unlike Wisconsin, our grapes at SeaCat’s Rest have not produced exploding buds (the horror!).  But still, there’s change afoot. On my daily trips to the mailbox, where I sometimes find checks from future guests, I have recently been meeting up with Br’er Fox, who was obviously upset by my mail quest. He (or she) slid ever-so-elegantly into the puckerbush before I so much as registered his (or her) presence. Not so subtle were the mating-crazed frogs in our culvert’s headwater. These creatures are vocally demonstrative, with variations not unlike the Vienna Boy’s Choir at puberty.

Elsewhere the odd flower or foliage is popping up. The crocuses have mostly come and gone. Tree buds are swelling despite the occasional dip into the 30s.  Two days ago it snowed. The annual road heavy load restrictions have been removed, a sure sign that the frost is losing to the forces of warmth. The Portland Press Herald reports that ticks are out early, a fact our cats can verify.

Green lawns are just starting. Not enough to satisfy the craving for green. For that we must visit the woods, where mosses are hogging all the chlorophyll. Just down the trail is a little pond where clumps of frog’s eggs are floating.

Not exactly a riot of color, sunlight and warmth, but these things take time in Maine. Even when it gets to 80 degrees in March, nature takes it’s time.

Frog's eggs

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