As this early Easter approaches, activity in plants outside has been restrained with the relatively cold March. The cold weather has caused delays in receiving bare-root trees and shrubs from Lake County that normally would have already been processed and potted. The main cause for delay is that the stock cannot be dug out of the ground due to the recent quite cold mornings resulting in frozen ground so that not even a spade could be forced into the ground. Setting up the nursery for sales has been delayed too so that much stock may not be available until closer to the second week of April and again depending on the weather in early April.

Late snows and cold for sure are not unusual as a photograph of the old farmhouse on May 10, 1923 shows three children in the north yard with winter coats and boots standing in snow that appears at least six inches deep. Then another photograph on again May 10, 1924 of the small house across the street from the old farm house is covered in snow. I had seen the 1924 photograph that was shown to me by Mrs. Aura Diehm that lived on what was once known as the 103 acre Diehm farm across the street from the nursery and which is now a housing development.

While consistent “normal” spring weather would be greatly appreciated, the spring of 2012 was the opposite as was evidenced by the famous Tulip Time festival in Holland, Michigan the first week of May. In that year, tee shirts were printed with the words “Stem Fest” as that’s all that was left of blooming tulips . I wonder what “they” will call the festival this year if the fields are not in bloom?