Nature lovers began the frenzy of watching for the first flowers of spring a few weeks ago. Here at Wild Ozark, we’re in a little eco-microcosm that is often more than a week behind surrounding areas in spring. Our temperatures stay cooler more often and our snow is often deeper. I watched with no small amount of envy as one after another of my peers posted victory photos to the various online medias, mainly to the Arkansas Native Plant group on Facebook.
Usually, Harbinger of Spring or Dutchmen’s Breeches are the first flowers I notice out here. This year they have not bloomed yet, or else I missed them if they did. I went out looking for Harbingers a couple of weeks ago and came back with only dried relics from last year.
Spring peepers have been regaling the nights and days with songs of merriment and woo. It was so loud last night I could hear them over the sound of rushing water, runoff from the day’s rains.
For all intents and purposes, it does seem that spring is here.
The very first flowers I saw bloom here at Wild Ozark was cress, on the last day of February. I think it is hairy cress, sometimes also called winter cress or chicken cress. It’s a delicious edible during early spring, but it’s a small plant and so gathering is a little tedious.
The next flower to appear was spring beauty, Claytonia virginica. This is always one of the first flowers.
And that’s about it so far right here at Wild Ozark. I think I saw a violet blooming but I didn’t stop right away and couldn’t find it when I went back down the driveway later.
When Does Ginseng Come Up?
A few more folks are beginning to search for when ginseng comes up in spring, but it’s still a bit early for them here. Usually that happens at the end of April. With spring being early, though, I might start looking for them in a few weeks. Actually, I look for them now, but don’t expect to see them until at least mid-March and likely not until April.
About Wild Ozark
Wild Ozark is a nature farm. Mostly we grow rocks. I use those rocks and some of the herbs to make earth pigments and watercolor paints. We also grow native clay that I use for paint and various other things. And then there are the trees. We grow lots of trees. My husband uses some for his woodworking and some for our Burnt Kettle Shagbark Hickory Syrup, but for the most part they stand around creating good air, shade, & habitat for the ginseng nursery.
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About the voice behind this blog, Madison Woods
I'm a creative old soul living way off the beaten path with my husband in the wild Ozark Mountains. You can find my art on display and for sale at the Kingston Square Arts shop in Kingston, Arkansas. It's a tiny little town and a bit off the path to anywhere at all, but a wonderful ride out to a most beautiful part of our state. Besides homesteading, growing plants & making arts & crafty things, I write books and stories. My rural fantasy fiction, written under the pen name, Ima Erthwitch, usually takes place in a much altered Ozarks.
Madison Woods is a Nature Artist & Fantasy Author living in the wild Ozark hills of northwest Arkansas. She uses native rocks, clay, and botanicals to create works of art to capture the magic of nature. Her writing reflects her love of adventure in the rural outback.
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