by Nicole Wines
The early part of the winter of 2015 will be known as one of the warmest on record for the Northeast US, the temperate region where our gardens plots and other EcoCulture projects are currently located. The last few weeks have brought about a burst of color, seldom seen in December in Central NJ. Roses, calendula, daisies, thyme, marjoram, all still growing, blooming, and producing.
While it does feel rather strange to have “spring” in December, we are taking advantage of the mild weather to continue harvesting fresh herbs to dry and for making tinctures, seeds for the Raíces Seed Library, and some fall greens for us and the Raíces chickens!
We will see in the spring how the warm and mild December affects our gardening season and the natural seasonal cycles in 2016. It is a bit worrisome, seeing spring bulb shoots and cherry blossoms on the trees a whole three months early, while some of our summer flower plants are still flourishing from the season before. But nature is resilient and will have much to teach us about adapting and adjusting to these seasonal aberrations if we just observe and listen. In the meantime, I’ll keep taking advantage of the mild temperatures and get in as much outside work as possible before the cold (hopefully) sets in!
What changes or oddities have you observed because of the warm weather in your yard or garden? What is still growing that would normally be long gone by year’s end? Leave a comment and let’s get dialoguing.
I took some walks around my town and my own backyard over the past week and collected some more “signs of spring” in December: