Here we are in February at last, following one of the longest Januarys ever I am sure. We still have not had the snow I would usually associate with this time of year, and whilst it has been cold and frosty at times, there have been harder winters. This is definitely not a grumble, and yet ....amber tuftiness only four weeks ago, is becoming that first glimpse of green.
The trees are on the move, the sap is clearly stirring. The birds are getting louder too. They are sounding their territories and signalling that it will soon be time to get jiggy with it (a technical term). The ladybirds keep wandering out of their hibernation places in the house too. Does anyone else have a bathroom that harbours overwintering ladybugs? I think it is because that is the window I have open probably more than any other and so they can easily wander in. They fit themselves into any little space in the window frames and the moment it is a tad warmer out they come for a mooch about. As long as they don't start spelling words on the walls I shall not mind. In the Spring when they emerge in bigger numbers I scoop them into my hand and pop them out of the window whispering 'fly my pretties'.
There are months of quince-anticipation ahead of us and this very first step is one of my most favourite moments of all. In February it is all to play for, the frosts can come and go safely as the trees are still in the early stages of pre-quinclet production. For now I shall stand watch over the Quince Brothers sending them encouraging vibes.
Time, will of course, tell.
More followed trees can be found here under the stewardship of Squirrelbasket.