Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Well, Shoots!

So here is my obligatory early-year gloat post. Even though January is barely half over, the first spring shoots are popping up here in my dreary- but balmy- little burg. Keep in mind that Toronto, Ontario is at a latitude of 43 degrees 40 minutes; Corvallis is at a latitude of 44 33, about a degree farther north. The difference of course is that there's a fairly large body of relatively warm water just a little west of where I currently sit. The Pacific Ocean is anything but pacific at this time of year, but it does do a fine job of keeping our winter temperatures quite peaceful overall, thank you. All the pictures will get at least a little bigger if you click on the green parts.I just noticed these this morning... if I remember correctly, they will grow up to be bluebells. Ferns stay green year-round here, and actually weather even severe cold spells without dying back.
I first noticed these last Thursday or Friday. I have no idea what they're called, but I'm pretty sure they're related to the eastern Jack-in-the-pulpits. The leaves are similar, and their flowers are kind of similar too, but without the outer sheath, or "pulpit." Just a naked little jack. The one time I've noticed the fruit, it's pretty similar as well: little red berries on the stalk. These are common landscaping plants here, and very nice for winter and spring green. But the leaves will have died back by mid-June.
These will eventually be daffodils...
...and so will these. Also too, Celina says her tulips are coming up.

Anyone else noticing any signs of incipient spring yet? Any of my British or mainland European readers?

Just to make the point, here's our average January temperatures in degrees Fahrenheit, from here:
Jan 1-12: 46
Jan 13-18: 47
Jan 19: 48
Jan 20-21: 47
Jan 22-29: 48
Jan 30-31 49

Right now, according to NWS/NOAA, it's 58. And according to the window, it's sunny. Nice day, nice plants. Yay Spring!

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