Garden Delights

I’ve heard it said many times this year: “They’re late,” they being any number of plants or birds.

Spring here in Oregon’s Willamette Valley was colder than normal, and damp, causing part of this…problem? Or is a natural cycle?

The roses in my wife’s lovely garden were a bit tardy but are now showboating. The neighboring butterfly bush, however, is without blooms and the swallowtails, who did arrive on time, are looking elsewhere.

At the organic garden we frequent raspberries and strawberries are plentiful, but tomatoes are having a difficult year. Grass hay was nearly three weeks behind schedule, and the pollen season was delayed as well, and the dismay of all those who suffer through it.

Most of our feathered visitors are here again, although after teasing us for a couple of days the evening grosbeaks moved on. Hummingbirds are infrequent, but I complain about that every year: like an English cream tea, you can never get enough.

A particularly bright spot around the yard is the return of house wrens after a two-year absence. We’ve seen three pair, noisily building nests and tending to their young. One family numbered seven and congregated mornings and evenings outside our bedroom window, until the kids knew everything (and more) than the parents and dispersed.


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