Have you scratched an entry onto the next wrinkled page in your phenology notebook just lately? You know, taking the time to notice what is happening on any given day in the world of plant and animal life cycles. Notebook or mental notes only, its great fun to ‘make note’ of the seasonal changes all around us in the Minnesota countryside.
Trees budding, skunk smell drifting from somewhere off, the first Robin pulling a worm , lots of hawks this year. Not everyone likes the growing turkey population along the lake. Must confess, I get excited to see them every single time. Any early ferns poking through? A friend wondered aloud if her Lavender plant will have made it through the winter this year. What’s your guess for ‘ice out’ on Big Stone Lake? It’s country-style joy to watch the return flight of the migratory birds but sad to watch the hungry deer this spring. After the long winter many deer are moving very slowly. “Hang on babies, the green grass is poking through and a few bites will start you back toward health.”
I so admire the dedicated people who keep phenology and temperature records for each day of the year. Often it becomes a life-long passion. Imagine the reward, to look over a year’s worth of notes and consider the vast amount of things you will have observed in nature. . . .just because you took the time to look and jot it down. My youngest son’s 4th grade teacher, Anne, introduced him to the study of phenology and the practice of keeping a progress notebook. Not a new concept but new to this boy and mom at the time. Good teachers leave their signature on your life in the wonderful skills of project learning. Thanks Anne!
This could be the year that I get better with my phenology notebook. I have not always been so scientific, ” Hmmm, must be winter since the pumpkins are froze down on the step. Hmmm, must be spring since the pumpkins are mushy and I need a shovel. Ooooo, the whole yard smells like horse poop. Yup, it’s spring. It was my idea to put the fence this close to the house so I’ll leave that out of the notebook.
Daydream. . . .I wonder what day I will be picking the first ripe tomato.
Staking a claim for nesting territory.