Anticipating Spring

It is still February, a long winter month in the Ozarks. The days are getting longer, the sun higher in the sky. The weather is anticipating spring.

Winter clouds are sheets of gray covering the sky. There are still plenty of those. Puffy, warmer weather clouds are starting to appear.

approaching spring changes clouds from stratus to cumulus
The grey stratus clouds sheeting the Ozark sky have moved on leaving warm weather cumulus puffs to move across. The sun is below the hills but hasn’t started setting enough to color these clouds.

Trees are bare. Mosses rule the world of green on the forest floor. In open areas the ground is anticipating spring.

The yard is a carpet of tiny , blue flowers. Corn speedwell is blooming madly on any sunny, warmer day.

Birds still mob the bird feeder seeking food hard to find in the wild. The birds argue, they sit in the bushes and trees and sing. They are anticipating spring.

approaching spring warmth brings out yellow in the sunset
Sunsets aren’t very pretty without clouds. Puffy clouds are nice as they light up with a variety of colors. A storm has just passed so yellow is the predominant color this late winter’s night in the Ozarks.

Now the yard has a few robins, a bluebird or two. The sky again has vultures circling. Great skeins of geese honk as they fly north. The juncos are eating madly, getting fat for their migration north next month.

February is a winter month. In the Ozarks no season reigns supreme for long. Masses of warm and cold air vie for mastery of the skies anticipating spring.

A few warm days spread spring fever among the plants and animals. Cold pounces down on this telling one and all winter still rules.

approaching spring brings out early wildflowers
Who waits for spring to bloom? Not little corn speedwell. This low growing plant native to Europe often blooms between snow falls in mid to late winter, if the sun is warm.

Cold air is heavy and stubborn. Warm air slips in to displace it. The battle of the seasons continues.

March comes soon bringing spring on the calendar. The war will continue as neither winter nor spring conform to such an artificial timetable.

Unfortunately for winter, time and sun move on. Winter’s reign is waning for yet another season. Winter will soon be in retreat.

Anticipating spring will become knowing spring has come. Winter will become a memory for months.

A new adversary will enter the seasonal war: summer.

Enjoy photographs of Ozark seasons in “My Ozark Home.”