Spring Finally Arrives in New York! Hurray! Photos from Highland Park (Near Rochester)

~~By Grail Guardian

After the longest Winter I can remember in quite a few years, Mother Nature has finally blessed Upstate New York with her bounty once again. Temperatures Saturday soared into the high 80s, and I actually was able to turn off the furnace and sleep with the windows open!

NM-GRL may have the New Mexico weather advantage, but we have the glorious eruption of a never-ending cascade of color and foliage that reminds us why we still live here. Basically, I think most of us will move once Governor Paterson figures out a way to tax the flowers and trees (I’m sure he’s working on it…)

So until then, let’s start with the sea of daffodils!

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This photo was taken last week, and many more have since come out. These are some early blooms at Highland Park (my favorite place to enjoy nature until my Dad gets his yard finished – I’ll do another post when his artistry is in bloom).

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The first Magnolias starting last week – they are now out in full force and walking through this section of the park sends you on a sensory journey that just has to be experienced! I love to just stand there with my eyes closed and breathe in the sweet fragrance…

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More Magnolias, surrounded by an incredible blanket of blue Glory of the Snow…

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A splash of Spring colors blankets the old Oak tree…

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I think this is a member of the Dogwood family. This park features an abundance of flora from around the world, and many unique species of lilacs created here for the annual Lilac Festival

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These pics were taken just before the 2008 Lilac Festival. I cannot even begin to describe the heavenly aroma that surrounds the park when these babies are in bloom…

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Some white Lilacs (photo from 2008)…

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Since I’m taking the trip down memory lane, here (again from 2008) are a few of the magnificent Azaleas that are taller than I am!

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Back to this year, Spring wouldn’t be complete without the forsythia. Again, this was taken last week, so they’ve filled in quite a bit.

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And here’s a preview of the Lilacs! Starting to leaf out…they’ll be glorious in a couple of weeks!

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And today the Bradford Pear outside work is in full bloom…

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And our birds’ favorite tree – they love to eat the flower buds, but the tree seems to withstand their assault quite nicely. The cardinals keep trying to build a nest in it, but it’s too close to the building so they give up every year. Thanks to the security coating on the windows, we can watch them quite close up. We have to hang feeders off the windows to keep them from flying into the glass, but our male cardinal still tries to fight the “other male” he sees in his reflection at least once a day.

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Editor’s Note:

Highland Park in Rochester was designed by Frederick Law Olmstead:

Renowned park designer Frederick Law Olmstead was responsible for final development of Highland Park. Among his other accomplishments was the design of New York City’s famous Central Park.

Saturday Sanity: The Antidote to the Madness (April 18, 2009) Glorious Organ Mountains; Apricots; Quail on the Wall; Sneaky Slick the Min Pin

Originally Posted at  InsightAnalytical

~~By NM-GRL (IA)

It’s been a frustrating week in the garden as the winds have continued and the temperatures have dipped the last day or so.  I’ve managed to put a couple of veggies and flowers into the patio pots, only to cover them up again to protect them from the weather.

Yesterday I bought a new Belle of Georgia peach to replace the one that is languishing.  I’ll get that in the ground over the weekend.

A big surprise is that I found a little apricot growing.  One seems to be finally showing on the flower I saw…but this one never seemed to have a flower that I ever saw, so imagine my surprise to see a an actual baby apricot!!  Let’s see if anything more shows up!

Last Tuesday I took advantage of the short trip over to my chess teacher’s house and took some wonderful pictures of the Organ Mountains. These views are literally a couple of minutes from my house…I’ll share one with you now:

Organ Mountain 4/16/09 Looking Like a Painting...
Organ Mountains 4/14/09 Looking Like a Painting…

New Mexico has wonderful light, which attracts a lot of artists.  The changes in the skies and the light that changes from second to second are things which never cease to amaze me.

Closer to home, the quail are beginning to show up on my wall.  I love these guys and their plaintive calls.

A Curious Quail...
A Curious Quail…

Finally, Slick the Sneak was into all sorts of trouble yesterday.  We left the house for an appointment and when we got back we found garbage all over the floor!  This hasn’t happened in quite awhile.  It really was close to the boys’ dinnertime, so I guess Slick was the leader of the pack in search of some grub.

This picture, which I took a couple of days ago, shows the little flash of the devil in his eyes:
Sneaky Slick
Sneaky Slick

Let’s hope the winds die down next week! I have to put up the new grape trellises, plant a chocolate flower and really have to decide if I should bag the peaches. So far the squirrels haven’t shown up, which is amazing. I see the papa or mama when I look over the wall and they gobble up the lettuce and other veg scraps I toss over right away.  I suppose they’re busy with babies and as they grow, I’m sure they’ll be hunting for a lot more food…including peaches!