Redbud Winter

The covers felt sooo good this morning! Technically it was one cover, since I have already put away the warm fuzzy blankets. Knowing how fickle Mother Nature can be, and because I hate lighting it, the ventless heater is still on, so one cover was sufficient with Scooter the cat curled at my feet.     

For the second morning my flower beds look a bit peculiar. Since the forecast was for temperatures dipping below freezing again, I covered my perennials that were just getting brave enough to peek out – one lone lily and several hostas along with some sprouts I can’t name. And my tulips. I have one about to open and three more that are up with no buds yet. That’s like my creeping phlox. It’s all green. No patches of tiny lilac or fuchsia blossoms have yet appeared, odd since they are usually among the first of the colors to appear in my yard.

Maybe the phlox decided to wise up and wait for the passing of redbud winter. Now in early April, the redbud veils along the roadways are stunning, thus the rationale behind the naming of this cold snap. Folklore warns us we may have a dogwood winter later this month when that magnificent tree dots hillsides, trails and roadways with low canopies of brilliant white on distinctive silhouettes.

Blackberry winter was the only spring cold snap I knew of till recently. That one is not until May when blackberries are blooming, not to be confused with the band from West Plains featured on the soundtrack of the film “Winter’s Bone.” Old-timers might  refer to it as linsey-woolen britches winter, when warm undies had to be dug out one more time.  I do recall wearing bloomers that were always put away after Easter. Wonder what today’s young’uns will call those extra clothes yanked on for late winter chills? Lined-leggings winter? Sweat pants winter? Bottoms winter? (pajama bottoms) Time will tell.

Written for Close to Home in the 4/7/2021 issue of The Prospect-News.

About Teresa Pearson Lee

Retired after 33 years of teaching English and French (one year in private school in Memphis, TN and the rest in public school in Doniphan, MO. Enjoying new adventures - all those things I put off for lack of time, energy, now I can try them! Pottery, writing, traveling, camping, kayaking, dancing, listening to some of the best live music ever, and making lively new friendships. All christened with an appreciation for great red wine! Created and operated KC's on the Current, then sold it and managed it for new owners. You might still find me at the reservation desk when spring rolls around. Born and raised in St. Louis, MO near The Hill. Though a transplant to Southeast Missouri, still a city gal at the core with a deep love of the natural resources in these Ozark foothills. Currently I am a content coordinator for Poplar Bluff Living Magazine and a columnist/stringer for the local weekly The Prospect News. My rescue Siamese helps with most of the proofreading; he has a great ear. I relish the solitude easily had in the Mark Twain Forest but thoroughly enjoy lively outings for music, wine, conversation close to home or in my beloved hometown. Technology is my greatest challenge but so worth the shared connections. There may be a need for solitude but there is little loneliness. The material in this blog written by Teresa Lee is her property and cannot be used without express written consent to do so.
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