Spring, maybe, has sprung

Mariner’s town had its first Spring day three days ago. A Spring day means the Sun is shining, the breeze is comfortable and the temperature is in the sixties. Two days ago the town had its second Spring day in a row. However, as expected the temperature returned to highs in the forties and in the twenties at night and a couple of inches of rain the ground doesn’t need.

On those two Spring days mariner wandered outside to examine the gardens and lawns. Early bulbs are breaking through the mulch; the azaleas out front haven’t shown any interest in growing yet; there is hope they will return in zone 3-4 conditions. He cut back the patch of dead cattails and the brown zebra grass in the shade garden. Mariner cleared the Asparagus bed. The pickup truck was full and ready for the dump.

Mariner noticed other small things. A #$!!@ rabbit had eaten his newly planted fig tree to the nub and two 18-inch high emerald arborvitae as well. Two years ago three fox families moved into town because of the abundance of rabbits. The foxes don’t seem to be around this year and the rabbits are back.

Mariner’s wife feeds the squirrels and birds during winter snows. The snow is gone and thousands of sunflower hulls cover the kitchen garden as if mariner had spread mulch. Mariner has lots and lots of tree leaves like Ash, Oak, Walnut, etc. to collect along fence lines, in the gardens, and across the lawns. Funny thing, mariner has only one tree – a Pecan tree.

So it’s the beginning of another garden season. It was not easy to collect the grasses and clear vegetable boxes. Fifteen years ago mariner could clean up the yard in three hours or so; this year it took all day and required several breaks to ease the pains of codgerhood. Tomorrow he’ll drive to the dump and maybe find a dumped truck load of good dirt to pilfer.

Ancient Mariner


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