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Poor Will's Almanack: May 5 - 11, 2015

Chris De Jabet
Flickr Creative Commons

This week brings blooming season for sweet Cicely and May apples. Mayflies hatch at the water’s edge.. Weevil season spreads throughout alfalfa fields. Thrush Season, Catbird Season and Scarlet Tanager Seasons reach the bushes. Bullfrogs mate in the swamp and spitbugs form in the parsnips.

Mountain maple and buckeye and wild cherry tree flowering seasons spread cross the countryside. Leaves of poison ivy – like the leaves of Virginia creeper and wild grapes ginkgoes, sycamores, witch hazels, and sweet gums – are just about half as big as they will be in June.

Azalea and quince and lilac petals wane with the moon, but daisies and the first cinquefoils open all the way. Chives blooms in the garden and the first strawberry ripens beside new lettuce and radishes and early peas.. Swallowtail butterflies visit the bleeding hearts. Morel season ends in the Ohio Valley, but enters its finest time in northern states.

In the far West, the bright yellow arrowleaf balsamroot is flowering and cottonwoods fill out. Elk migrate into higher summer ranges, and cutthroat trout spawn in mountain streams.

This is Bill Felker with Poor Will’s Almanack. I’ll be back again next week with notes for the third week of late spring. In the meantime, plan for strawberry pie.

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Bill Felker has been writing nature columns and almanacs for regional and national publications since 1984. His Poor Will’s Almanack has appeared as an annual publication since 2003. His organization of weather patterns and phenology (what happens when in nature) offers a unique structure for understanding the repeating rhythms of the year.