Spring Out of Sync
Following our long, cold winter, we seem to be having a cold spring as well. Temperatures lately are mostly in the 40s and 50s (F), well below normal. This means delayed blooming and leafing out, particularly for woody plants. In 2013 we had another cool spring, but many shrubs seem to be running about two weeks behind where they were last year.
For example, my spicebush (Lindera benzoin) just started blooming a couple of days into May. Last year they began blooming by mid-April, and the flowers had all dropped by the end of the month.
And my serviceberry (Amelanchier x grandiflora) blooms still haven’t opened. Last year they were in flower by the end of April.
Plus, it looks like we won’t be getting any forsythia flowers to speak of this spring. No, I didn’t prune them too late. But it looks like the buds had started to open, only to be zapped by a sudden freeze.
A cool spring has its pros and cons. On the one hand, I don’t plan to put any really tender plants or seeds (tomatoes, morning glories, etc.) in the ground before June 1, if then. They will simply rot (or, at best, sulk) in the cold ground. Better to give the soil time to warm up.
On the other hand, early annuals will probably last far longer into the season. And perennial flowers won’t be so quick fade, either. The cool weather is also good for new transplants.
For myself, I am trying to focus on the positive. I can live with a cool spring as long as winter is truly gone.
Does a cool spring bother you much?