The arrival of Spring may be subtle, but once here, it progresses by leaps and bounds. One week the ground and the trees are bare and brown; the next, glints of green have appeared underfoot, and branches are suddenly beaded with the suggestion of growth.
Then one morning you wake up and find that the world has turned emerald-colour, seemingly overnight. Daffodils flare up and die down; tulips appear in the neighbour's lawn. Soft-tinted canopies of leaves are overhead, and for a brief, precious spell, the normally shy wild fruit-trees are decked in dainty white.
Lucky the cyclist who knows where they live, and can ride out to see them before the blossoms fade.
A wild apple tree at the edge of town:
A mile or so down the road, three flowering trees lean out at intervals from a scrubby screen of brush. Most of the year they fade modestly into the background, but this is their week to shine:
By the scent I would guess that they're wild plum, though they never seem to bear fruit.
Another mile down, a little tree glows against its background of woods:
At the edge of a field, more blossoms blow:
Other things are blooming too. We pass a long shady stretch simply covered with violets of all shapes and shades: blue, rich reddish-purple, pale mauve, white.
Tallulah enjoys a whiff of violet heaven while I prowl around looking at the different varieties:
Down in the marsh, the kingcups (Marsh Marigold) are glowing like small suns:
I meant this to be a fruit-tree-blossom post, but one thing I've learned after years of cycling and taking photos is to get the shot while I can, because it may not be there the next time around. This is especially true of certain wildflowers; in another week or so the kingcups will be entirely hidden by marsh grasses.
At the far end of the marsh, a small wild plum and tall wild apple grow side by side. The apple tree has passed its peak of bloom, but the plum is still gloriously bedizened with white:
The Allegheny Serviceberry blossoms (below) have begun to droop; another few days and the petals will be gone:
The rest of the ride is punctuated by random whiffs of plummy sweetness carried on the wind. How enticing is the scent of wild plum; how beautiful are all the flowering trees of spring.
Are there blossoming trees where you live? Do you have a favourite?
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