Nature Friday ~ February 5, 2021

Well howdy there…welcome to the first Friday of February (say that fast ten times). Once again we’re joining our Nature Friday weekly hosts, Rosy, Sunny, Arty and Jakey from LLB in Our Backyard. Don’t forget to click on their link to see what they and others around Blogville have discovered in nature this week.

Despite the Groundhog supposedly seeing his shadow earlier this week predicting six more weeks of winter, it’s been pretty mild in the Mile High, so much so that any lingering snow from the latest storm has now melted away. That means it’s back to the season of drab brown for the most part.

But there’s hope. I’ve begun to notice little sprouts poking through the soil here and there. While walking the Ranch hands a couple of days ago, I was rewarded by a small cluster of blooms. One of my favorite of the spring bulbs, crocuses are a member of the iris family and are native to woodlands, scrubs, and meadows from sea level to alpine tundra in North Africa and the Middle East, central and southern Europe (and in particular Krokos, Greece), as well as across Central Asia in western China. Typically thought of as a spring bloomer, crocuses (or croci if you prefer) bloom in spring, summer and autumn. Did you know the spice saffron comes from the stigmas of Crocus sativus, which is an autumn-blooming species?

Crocus come in a variety of colors but typically are found in shades of lilac, mauve, yellow, and white and may show a white central stripe along the leaf axis. Seeing them bloom in snow is not uncommon, especially here in Denver. I almost missed this cluster, my brain initially processing it as merely a small piece of paper blown near the base of a nearby shrub.

Flowers

They seem so delicate and yet, these little guys are quite hardy so I’m really glad I stopped to more closely examine this little spot of color instead of just breezing by without a closer look. Seeing this little beauty reminded me that spring can’t be too far away. In fact, I’m just guessing just about six weeks. Do you think that furry, overweight prognosticator is an accurate predictor of spring’s arrival or is it merely coincidental with the calendar’s announcement that spring officially arrives March 20th? Put me solidly in the calendar camp as being more accurate. I just don’t trust rodents to predict the arrival of seasons.

Any signs of spring in your ‘Hood yet? The Ranch hands and I hope you have a lovely Friday and an even better weekend. Don’t forget to stop and savor even the smallest spots in nature. You’ll no doubt be well rewarded.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

88 thoughts on “Nature Friday ~ February 5, 2021

  1. I go to the garden several times every day and curiously look out for signs of spring. Today i was able to spot the first little daisies. The fresh spring sun lured them out. 🌼🌼🌼
    Greetings from the beautiful Rhine-Highlands / Germany …
    Rosie

    1. Greetings right back at you and thank you for coming to visit our Ranch. We 💙 visitors, especially those from my native land.

      There are just a few bulbs peeking up between small piles of snow this week but it seems certain Spring will arrive soon. Tschüss!

      1. How nice! We are now looking to see whether and what we can already do in the garden – simply because it is fun. Yesterday evening our hedgehog woke up from hibernation, did a few laps around his house and ate a bit. This is a sign of the gradual beginning of spring! 🌞🌞
        I wish you all the best…
        Rosie

        1. That’s definitely a good sign. Spring bulbs are slowly beginning to peak up out of the ground so it shouldn’t be too long. And in any event, spring storms are the best, they dump a lot of snow quenching thirsty plants but melt very quickly. Habe ein schönes Wochenende!

  2. I can hardly wait until spring! Unfortunately, we are about to have temps in the low 20’s. I am not excited. LOL!

    1. 20’s will be our highs later this week. Awk! I got used to those 60ºF days of last week. 😊

  3. Spring?? Um…not anytime soon…at least not here, its 11F and going down, down, down. If our spring flowers are smart they will stay hidden…anyways they are buried under several inches of snow.
    Rodents?? They only thing we hooligans think they are good for is being chased!

    1. We should be getting more snow. For the last 3 years, it’s snowed around Mother’s Day. 😳

    1. If it’s any consolation we’re heading into our two snowiest months of the year-March & April. The past 3 years, its snowed the week of Mother’s Day so I’m guessing we’ll get hammered at some point in the near future. At least I hope so, water reservoirs need to be topped up!

  4. I predicted a few weeks ago that because winter hadn’t slammed us yet, February was going to be winter on steroids. Boy was I right given the current cold and weeklong forecast for MORE cold. How much do groundhogs get paid for public appearances?

    1. A Polar Vortex will be arriving later this week. I don’t mind the cold so long as some moisture accompanies it. 🤞🏼 Stay warm. Yeah, those groundhogs…lay around all year and then come waddling out one day and expect attention and adoration. Puleez.

  5. Not even close to seeing anything of the sort here! There may be some buds on some trees but I always wonder if they are gonna make it.
    Now that it is already Sunday… happy Sunday!

    1. We’ll (hopefully) see some more of the same white stuff you’re experiencing. 🤞🏼

  6. What a beautiful sight to stumble upon…I’m waiting patiently for that day as we sit here with negative degree weather:) happy for you that spring is feeling close!

    1. Oh trust me, winter will rear it’s cold head several times but just seeing that small cluster made me vey hopeful for the next six weeks.

    1. Ooh, more spring beauties. Love them, especially the daffodils! Have never had good luck with the snowdrops. The squirrels in my neighborhood seem to enjoy them. 😕

    1. We hope there’s a little more winter here-we need the moisture but I’ll take blooming crocus any day! Have a pawsome weekend.

    1. We’re coming into our snowiest months (March and April) and while we won’t get snow that deep, I do hope we get some; otherwise it will be one extremely dry summer. Crocuses are my favorites and even after being buried in snow continue to bloom. They are amazing.

    1. They are so sturdy and hardy. And bring hopeful smiles to people when they often need it most.

  7. Mee-yow wow Miss Monika you has cute crocussess!!! Wee have 3 feet of snow! An wee herd wee will get an earlee Spring! Wee will see rite???
    Hope you an THE Ranch Handss have a lovelee weekend!
    **purrss** bellaDharma an ((hugggiess)) LadyMew

  8. I can’t believe you already have flowers sprouting there. We live in the South and only a bit of green grass around here. I never understood why sushine (the only way he can see his shadow) meant more winter. Shouldn’t it be just the opposite?

    1. Worse yet, why are people relying on a rodent. Coincidentally winter ends in…wait for it…6 weeks anyway.

      I guess when you’re a mile high in elevation sunshine wakes up bulbs sooner. But trust me…we’ve had snow right after Mother’s Day so you just never know what will happen around here. ☺️

      1. We all still talk about the great snow of ’93 around here. It was the second week of March. And it was a foot or more and shut everything down for about a week.

        1. A few months after I moved to Denver, the infamous Christmas Eve Blizzard of 82 dumped 3 ft. of snow on the city and shut everything down for days. I was driving a MG Midget back then, it stayed buried until nearly spring (it was in a shaded spot). It was a magical week of crystalyn snow and people helping everyone trying to dig out.

  9. We don’t have any crocuses in our yard, but we do have hyacinths. No sign of them yet. We do still have green grass although that may all change after the arctic air blast coming in this weekend.

    Woos – Lighting, Misty, and Timber

    1. Gosh I can’t remember when I last saw green grass. We hope it’s not too cold for you guys!

  10. I’m with you. I don’t trust the rodents. Love the crocus. I did see two dandelions, budding daffodils, and some robins during my walk today. Guess Spring isn’t too far away.

  11. Spring here means the hummingbirds are nesting at the same time that my cats are shedding their winter undercoats. I put their soft fluffy fur out after a combing and the hummies go crazy for it as nesting material…LOL!

  12. No real signs of spring here, except for temporary invasion of small ants, which typically doesn’t happen till April. Crisis averted on that count, but I wish my sign of spring would’ve been as beautiful as yours instead.

    Happy Friday Monika.

    1. Those little sugar ants invaded the laundry room about a month ago. Doggone little pests! Have a great weekend!

            1. Absolutely not!! They can nosh on crumbs but you gotta draw the line when it comes to ‘suds!’

  13. Crocuses! Lucky you! We are getting a lot of snow this week; two days of storms and two more coming next week. No signs of spring here!

    1. We hope there’ll be some snow in our future, otherwise there won’t be too many more flowers!

  14. After all the rain we’ve had lately, the trees and flowers here are all starting to bloom too!

    1. Thanks, Jean. No doubt there will be several storms before spring really arrives, but these small spots of color are certainly welcome. Have a good weekend.

  15. No signs of Spring here yet……March is more reasonable but even that’s pushing it. I’ll be happy to see some signs though…..I love crocus and all the “earlies” – I gave up trying to grow them though years ago because the squirrels dug all the bulbs up and ate them EVERY TIME!

    Hugs, Pam

    1. Yeah, I know what you mean…the ‘other’ troublesome rodent. They ate a batch of grape hyacinths in my yard the first year. Found out they don’t like cayenne pepper in the mulch. 😈

  16. What a delightful post. Yes spring is right around the corner. I’m so ready.

    Have a fabulous day and weekend. Scritches to the pups. ♥

        1. Woohoo! I never turn down a 40+ degree day in January or February! Enjoy and have a terrific weekend.

  17. There was a saffron industry in the 19th/early 20th century not far from where we lived in France…long gone by our time, but the grannies remembered that the women who picked the flowers and removed the stamens were regarded with suspicion by the ‘respectable’ as the saffron was supposed to have some bacchic effect on them!

    1. Wow, have never heard about that quality but it’s certainly possible. Because it’s such a great tasty spice, I make allowances. 😉 Have a great weekend.

          1. The elbows are in fine fettle….but when it comes to hunting down men through the shrubbery in order to rend them apart while under the influence the knees have had it…the knees have had it….

            1. I’d personally enlist the thugs, Helen. They can be trained in rendering, I’m told.

                    1. Well…if they can keep the riffraff to a minimum it’s probably worth it.

                    2. They have sertainly done that. No more loving couples on the road, no more adventurous gentlemen checking on anything not nailed to the floor…

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