Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Gardening on the Vernal Equinox

It is Springtime in New Hampshire. The phoebe arrived in our yard on Saturday while I was away. Srini noted its arrival. I heard its familiar raspy phoe-be yesterday while hanging out laundry on a 75 degree day.

Earlier, on our morning walk, we saw the slender crescent moon rising just before sunrise as it heads toward new moon this week. While we gazed at the stars and the moon and the growing light we listened to the now daily woodcock peents. A turkey gobbled from the hardwoods on Bald Hill. The great horned owl hooted from the big pines along the wetland edge. Mallards quacked to each other from the wetland and a band of spring peepers joined the dawn chorus.

Today, we celebrate the vernal equinox, with equal parts night and day, when the sun rises due east and sets due west. Although to be precise, apparently there is already a little more day than night on the first day of spring. And more daylight to celebrate each day forward.

I messed around in the yard today. It felt good, although a little early, to be working on my garden rows. The soil is so dry I can transplant the rhubarb and plant cilantro. As warm as it will be this week--80s for three days in a row--watering is required. In March!

As I was gardening, a pair of red-shouldered hawks circled and soared overhead, their loud, clear keeyuur keeyuur calls to each other drew my attention skyward.

It is Springtime.


  1. Hi Ellen,

    More often than not, I pass along your blog reports to my wife to read. And like me, she thoroughly enjoys reading them. I thought you might appreciate her comment about this particular blog entry of yours. She remarked that this is a beautiful example of a "LYRIC MOMENT", which apparently is defined as: "A timeless period of introspection or memory in which a poetic speaker describes or recounts his or her feelings, impressions, and thoughts."


  2. Wow John, that makes my heart soar that your wife would say that about my writing. Thank you and her! This is such a special time of year, more so even than all the other special times! There is something about working in the garden turning the soil with my bare hands and the birds singing and arriving and each day plants emerging. A wondrous time. Thank you for your kind words.

  3. A special time of year indeed, and a very special way of writing about it. I think John and his wife are right about the Lyric MOMENT.

  4. Thanks Ken. I think of you as each new bird arrives in our yard, knowing that you might have seen or heard it first! Ellen