Each year, Hoot Owl Karma celebrates the impending arrival of spring with a late winter walk in the woods to commune with the early-blooming wildflowers. One of our favorite and most reliable harbingers of spring is the trout lily, and as you can see in these posts from 2013 and 2014, its distinctive mottled green leaves typically emerge from the forest floor in mid to late February, with delicate golden blossoms appearing a day or so later.
With the wintry weather delaying the opening of school, and in keeping with tradition, we slipped into the forest yesterday for a quick visit, only to find things running at least a few days behind schedule.
Here on the margin of our little stream, leaves swept aside by the swollen waters of Thursday morning's icy downpour, a small gathering of lilies emerges to greet the chilly sunshine.
As though keenly aware of their tardiness, the spear-pointed leaves thrust inexorably sunward, piercing or thrusting asunder any and all impediments.
Poised on the very eve of March, no blossoms yet appear.
A quick scan of the surrounding slopes, however, does reveal a solitary bud, poised to lead the glorious anthem of spring which will soon burst forth from the decaying detritus of fall. Here's hoping we make it back in time for the chorus...