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Poor Will's Almanack: February 16 - 22, 2016

Lorianne DiSabato
Flickr Creative Commons

By this point in the year, my daybook of events in nature reveals many of the pieces of the fabric which forms, for me, early spring.

On February 16,1983, I noted that cardinals were singing at 7:00 a.m. sharp, something that couldn't have happened two weeks earlier.

On February 16, 1990, I wrote: "Some pussy willows in front of the house have emerged completely. Maple buds are swelling. Tulips are up three inches, daffodils, four, garlic four to six inches, so many things pushing out."

On that date in 2005, I noticed that two sparrows were working on a nest in the birdhouse hanging on the side of the house.

On February 17, 1983, I wrote: "First bee of the year seen today."

On February 17, 1985, I saw the first fly of the year sitting on the snow."

On February 18 in 1984, I heard the first red-winged blackbird at the swamp. The first maples were flowering.

On the 18th of February in 1990, a few honeysuckle bushes had leafed out, The first rhubarb had a red stalk four inches long.

On the 18th of February 1999, a purple crocus opened by the front door.

On February 19th, 1982, One earth worm was crossing the sidewalk in the rain.

On February 20th in 1983, the first new strawberry leaves came out.

This is Bill Felker with Poor Will's Almanack. I'll be back again next week with notes for the Second Week of Early Spring. In the mean time, keep gathering pieces of the year. When all the pieces you need are visible, then it really will be Early Spring.

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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.