The pussy willow post

Pussy willow

It is assuredly spring in the North woods.

The snow hath melted–finally.  Even the snow-plowed banks have melted.  Last week’s surprise snowstorm has melted.

We are all heaving a sigh a relief–and delight.

Pussy willows lying sedately against telephone pole

The pussy willows are blooming everywhere.  Spring is settling into the  ditches and trees and plants of the landscape.  Spring is announcing her arrival with flair!

We can only stand by and rejoice.  The long winter is finally…dare we utter the word?…over!

Pussy willow welcomes hungry ant to dinner

Barry and I have been splitting and hauling and stacking wood faithfully lately.  Almost every day.  We didn’t get as many logs delivered as last year, so this year’s chore seems leisurely.  Only one more load now.  After that, we may choose to chop down a couple of dead trees, or perhaps trees in danger of falling upon buildings.  But we’re almost done.  (Sorry, I’ve forgotten to report the wood-splitting chore to you this year.  If you want to read more about our annual wood splitting fun please click here or here.)

Pussy willow poses for camera

I am enjoying spending time each day in these beloved North Woods.  The mosquitoes are not around–or, if they do appear–refuse to bite.  The temperature ranges between the 40’s and 60’s.  It’s an early spring. 

We do, however, need rain.  Please send some our way.  We don’t need any wildfires this year.  Please.

Pussy willow in the sky

Hoping that you are all enjoying Spring wherever you may be.  Or, if you’re on the other side of the world, that you’re enjoying autumn. 

What is your favorite part of spring?  Do you feel energized and inspired at this time of year?  Is this one of your favorite seasons?

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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19 Responses to The pussy willow post

  1. Barbara says:

    oooooooh – I love pussy willows, but can’t say I’ve ever examined them that closely! It’s nice to bring some into the house in a vase for the shut-ins. You can have some of our rain, as much as you want! Lovely pictures!

  2. Sue says:

    My list of springtime favorites from the UP include: Arbutus, Smelt, green poking through brown, the sound of babbling brooks, mud puddles, birdsong, Cowslips, and yes…. pussy-willows! Thanks for the pictures….I hope I get to see them in person soon! ~*~

    • Kathy says:

      Sue, love your inventory of favorite UP spring things! So glad you’re going to be here to enjoy them… Wish I could be enjoying them with you. But next time!

  3. Barb says:

    I had no idea they opened like that! Looks as though you do have spring in the North Woods.

  4. pearlz says:

    We are seeing the end of the wet season here. It means less lawn moving time between rain bursts hooray. I love the pictures. Although we don’t have spring as such we do have trees that blossom and attract butterflies.

    • Kathy says:

      June, bet your blossoming trees and butterflies are gorgeous. Have never lived in a place with a rainy season, per se. That would be interesting.

  5. holessence says:

    Kathy – I love the photographs that you posted in this blog; they’re wonderful!

    My favorite part of spring is now — early on. I enjoy seeing the new leaf buds on the trees.

    I feel extremely energized and inspired at this time of year. We’re already hearing baby birds chirping in the many nests around our home.

    The only reason spring isn’t one of my favorite seasons is because we have a total of 12 muddy dog paws to wipe throughout the day when three dogs come in from the “sloppiness” that’s a natural part of spring.

    Laurie Buchanan
    http://holessence.wordpress.com/

    • Kathy says:

      Laurie, laughing (symphathetically) at the image of your 12 muddy dog paws. That would be a challenge of spring! But the new leaf buds on the trees are heavenly…

  6. Reggie says:

    Beautiful pictures, Kathy!

    We don’t have pussy willows down here in South Africa – at least not as far as I know, as I’ve never seen one. They look both bristly and soft and fluffy – just the sight of all that yellow pollen is making my nose twitch for a sneeze. 😉

    Hope you and Barry are having fun with your wood-chopping! I’m curious though: Isn’t that usually something one does during autumn prior to the cold winter, when you light fires in the house? Or do you also use wood in the house during the summer?

    • Kathy says:

      Reggie, would want to make you sneeze across the ocean just looking at pussy willow/pollen photos. We are having fun with our wood chopping. We like to do it in the spring because then the wood has plenty of time to dry by the time you start burning it next autumn or winter. We don’t LIKE to burn wood in the summer, but last summer’s coolness often necessitated a tiny fire in the early morning. Hope we get a warmer summer this year.

      • Reggie says:

        Well, I feel like such a nit-wit for not knowing that: OF COURSE, wood has to have a chance to dry properly!

        I guess, living in sunny Africa, where we have pretty good weather all year around (man, are we spoiled… :-)), the thought that wood won’t have a chance to dry out unless you chop it in spring and leave it to dry all the way through to winter, is just quite a foreign thought.

        Personally, we don’t use wood to heat our house during winter. Our fireplace in the lounge is most ineffectual – it barely heats up the lounge. Basically, we just (albeit rarely) use it to create a cosy mood when it’s cold and wet outside at night. But the downside of having the smell of smoke in your clothes, skin, hair and furniture, and all that cold ash to clean up the next morning, usually puts us off lighting it in the first place.

        However, we DO use wood for braaing (or barbecuing as you call it?), which happens primarily during summer. That Wikipedia article on this wonderful social activity is quite good!

  7. Cindy Lou says:

    Ahhh…..next to full-blown summer, it’s my favorite season! My energy and vitality come alive again, new life is bursting out all over and I get just plain happy! I cleaned out a couple of my flower gardens yesterday and there’s all sorts of delightful little green shoots popping up. Trout lilies are up in the woods though not blooming yet, mud season is over, (I can sooooo relate, Laurie, as I have 4 dogs of my own to get through this lovely part of spring) and tick season has yet to start. Life is good! 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Cindy, isn’t it a perfect pause in the woods before the mosquitoes and ticks? And, you’re right, the mud has largely dried up. If I recall, you saw the trout lilies before we did last spring, too. I’ll bet you are in 7th heaven with all those green garden shoots. 🙂

  8. I so welcome that sappy smell that comes with pussy willows. When up north I would have a spring bouquet of these early favourites. It off set the mud that was always close on their heals as the snow melted and the frost came out of the ground.

    • Kathy says:

      Terrill, mmmm, sap smell! I am so glad that the snow has melted and the frost is gone. (Except in early mornings when it often still covers the windshields and must be scraped before work.)

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