There’s nothing like gardening to turn you into a lover of spring. There’s something about
watching the first buds emerging on the trees, seeing tiny bunnies hop away into the bushes and hearing the first sounds of neighbourhood children playing outside after an ugly, wet, miserable winter.
Right, parenting also makes you appreciate spring. Boots, hats, coats, scarves, snowpants and mitts: be gone!
I love to watch tightly wrapped buds gradually unfurl, making way for wrinkled, crumpled leaves that start to offer a hint of their future magnificence. In the past two weeks, the trees were just starting to put on their underwear (as members of my family sometimes call it), and BAM! Two days later, we had leafy canopies.
But, speaking of gardens and spring and parenting, we were also granted a particularly entertaining piece of luck this season. A couple of cardinals decided to take up residence in our garden and start a family. Using a ladder, my husband found their nest safely tucked into the tangled top of our mulberry bush, filled with three squeaking, hideously adorable little babies. Nearby, mom and dad hopped from tree to tree, chirping their dissatisfaction with us.
After a couple of days, all the babies had left and we thought they were gone, until my husband heard noises and saw bright red cardinal daddy swooping around. In the dark, with a flashlight, he found one fledgling, looking slightly stunned, sitting by the side of the house. Later, they graduated to our back yard, where one particular little one spent a few days hopping between our climbing structure, the hammock and our naturalized area, as he learned to fly in longer and longer spurts. Mom and dad took turns watching out for him. Of course, shortly after, once he had mastered flight and could make it up and over the fence, they were gone.
Safe travels little birds! Come back and