As I walked from the garage to the south side of our house this morning to put out food scraps for our neighborhood critters, the yard exhaled a saturated squish with each footstep. Mother Nature has treated us to a week of damp mist, freezing fog, and temperatures hovering around 32F. The snow cover of early January is almost gone, replaced by puddles, mud and soggy turf. Everywhere I look around our landscape, the plants and hardscape seem heavy with moisture, as if they would become liquid with one additional drop of water.

A hellebore, normally solid and leathery, droops heavy with moisture.
Ivy hangs over the edge of a retaining wall soaked through with melt water. The color of the retaining wall block is most intense when wet, bringing out the richness of the pink, gray and tans.

Mum foliage, missed in our late fall garden cleanup, sags on its stems in one our our deck containers.

The bark of a littleleaf linden, normally a medium gray, appears almost black with saturation.
The dark outer bark of the peeling trunks of an Eastern redbud contrasts beautifully with the pink tones below.
Although I’m sure they’d prefer a little warmer weather, our frog family appears right at home in our mid-winter bog.
The weather forecast promises temperatures in the mid-40s for this weekend, so we’ll likely say goodbye to the remaining snow, at least for now. I am hopeful that we can find some sunshine in this permacast that has settled in the Midwest. Gardens and people are very much the same when subjected to day after day of gray, cold, rainy skies. Their spirits sag and limbs droop, saturated, heavy and wishing for spring.

Published by Christopher Tidrick

Be real. Love always. Share beauty. Lead well. Learn more.

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