1 An early March landscape of my farm with billowy clouds
2 Despite a mild winter, the landscape is still quite brown.
3 Lichen growing upon the paddock fencing - Lichen are unusual composite organisms - a symbiotic relationship of a fungus and an algae. Lichens are able to exist in some of the most extreme environments on Earth.
4 With such mild temperatures, the spring-flowering bulbs are off to an early start, like these little white crocus naturalizing in a section of lawn.
5 Purple crocuses are growing nicely near the little house that holds my antique basket collection.
6 These bright yellow crocus mysteriously appeared this year, probably relocated by a foraging squirrel.
7 The daffodil border that stretches the length of Maple Avenue has gotten quite tall in recent days.
8 And there are plenty of buds ready to burst open.
9 Chiondoxa, or Glory-of-the-Snow is an early spring bloomer.
10 Glory-of-the-Snow is so-named because in some climates it blooms early enough that it pokes its little bright blue flowers right out of the snow, however, this year, we have no snow.
11 Naturalizing purple crocus near the contemporary house
12 These purple crocus are happy growing in the woods, again, probably relocated there by a squirrel.
13 The little woodland folly is surrounded by woodland plantings.
14 Like these little clusters of puschkinia, which do very well in the woodland.
15 There are also pure white crocus with bright yellow centers.
16 The crocus are happy here and so is this honeybee!
17 My farm crew has been doing a great job of clearing out the woods, with a strong focus on this area known as the wetlands.
18 They have been removing all of the prickly bramble and barberry, which tends to take over.
19 We are talking truckloads!
20 Once overgrown, the wetlands look amazingly clear!
21 This is a view from the opposite side looking towards the pussy willow grove.
22 Ryan and Wilmer have been cutting the pussy willows for indoor arrangements.
23 Fuzzy pussy willows
24 And happy honeybees
25 They have also been doing some major pruning, as the pussy willows had gotten quite tall and overgrown.
26 Pussy willows love moisture and consequently, they thrive along banks of streams or along the edges of wetlands. It's important to prune pussy willows to control their size.
27 Plus, a vigorous pruning encourages new branches to grow, which will produce larger catkins.
28 I asked Ryan to root 500 new pussy willow plants to fill up the wetlands. He placed the cuttings into tubs filled with water.
29 These cuttings will soon grow roots and then can be planted in the ground.
30 Nicely cleared woods
31 A gurgling stream in the woods
32 This is the very distinctive spathe of a skunk cabbage plant growing alongside the stream.
33 This low growing, foul smelling plant grows where there is ample water and it will eventually produce large green leaves that emit a foul, skunk-like odor when cut or torn.
34 The allee of linden with crocuses blooming
35 A closeup of the crocuses - The beds are covered with a mesh netting to help prevent critters from digging the bulbs.
36 The pair of Black Welsh Mountain Sheep have become very friendly.
37 The average wool clip is three to four pounds per sheep.
38 Shearing usually occurs in late April or Early May.
39 Tulips are sprouting in the cutting garden, which is adjacent to the chicken yard.
40 And so are hyacinths
41 There are also sprouting perennials in the vegetable garden.
42 Bright red rhubarb is pushing through the soil. I can't wait for rhubarb crisp and rhubarb pie.
43 It's been so warm that the greenhouses need to be ventilated. This is the newest structure, which was completed last November. It's sides roll up allowing for air flow.
44 Ryan has grown very healthy tomatoes in the cold house.
45 They are finally producing tomatoes.
46 And those tomatoes are getting ripe.
47 Ryan has also been starting seeds in the main greenhouse.
48 Assorted cabbages are growing well.
49 As are these broccoli plants
50 And onions
51 And cardoon
52 And artichokes