Spent the late morning and early afternoon clearing out underbrush along the back fence. A tangle of shrubs gone wild and invasive vines from who knows where, that 20-foot run was where Stanky, the outside cat, and assorted other feral felines liked to lie in wait to ambush birds coming in to the feeders. Damned cat just kept giving me the Stank Eye all the while I was trimming out his playhouse which made the chore that much more gratifying.
The calendar records today as March 5, a good ten days shy of the average final frost date for this hump on the Rolling Plains. Tackling the tangled fringes of our still new-to-us backyard is my primary strategy for not putting seed in the ground, even as the urge to sow grows with each passing day of temperatures well above seasonal normals. Yes, I know seeds could be started indoors now, but I prefer not to do that for a couple of reasons. The first is lack of space for flats of seedlings, and the other is indoor cats and a dog, all of whom would dearly love to "help" tend indoor starts.
Reckless bradford pear trees bursting into full bloom all over town do not help. Then just today I discovered that buds had erupted on two redbud saplings out back. I knew of the one along the eastern fence, but the second one was not discovered until this morning's clearing chores. Talk about pleasant surprises!
Nor is it just early-blooming ornamentals pushing the season. With consistent daytime highs pushing 80F the tank tops and hot pants are bursting out all over, too. Hell, the neighbor lady across the street already has buzzed her front lawn with the mower!
In other news from the homestead, thistle seed in the tube feeder has brought in a trio of lesser goldfinches, a male and two females. A pair of cardinals also are regulars at the pagoda feeder, along with Carolina chickadees, house finches, house sparrows and dark-eyed juncos. We brought in a ceramic fire pit a couple of weeks ago, and I now have almost resigned myself to backyard camping of an evening.
No, it's not the same, but it is convenient!