Tuesday, April 20, 2010

An Uneven Spring

Here in western Montana, Spring has taken its time arriving. After a couple of unseasonably warm days in early March, our weather was overly chilly and gray for way longer than normal. Signs of Spring were hard to find here on the outskirts of Missoula. Last week I rummaged through some dried leaves and found hope in these daffodil shoots just emerging from the cold earth. But north of us, on the same day in the little town of Arlee, a friend celebrated the arrival of spring big time with beds bursting with daffodils in bloom. This photo shows only a few of her actual thousands and thousands of these wonderful spring flowers.

The differences in microclimates here in the mountain west always intrigues me. My friend's garden is always ahead of mine, for she lives in a special little corner with a steep hill just behind her property to the north, which both shields her place from the cold wind and radiates sunshine's warmth into her orchard of peaches and cherries, trees it isn't worth trying to grow where I live. Even in my own yard I see differences. The front yard, which faces north and is partly shaded by the house, has yet to come alive, while the garden area on the south side is beginning to show promise.

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