It's March 20th and the calendar tells me it's the first day of spring. Well, happy spring to you. But, more importantly this means we're transitioning from lion to lamb mode. It may be the first day of spring, but i'd have to say it's feeling more summerish around here.
The greener trees and warmer temperatures sure gets the Eager Beaver in us going, but the most noteworthy word of that last paragraph is "transitioning". Yes, "March in like a lion, out like a lamb" says it all. March is a key transition month here in Central Florida. This is USDA growing zone 9 and early to mid March still holds the real threat of frost which spoils any Eager Beaver (cheating) attempts at getting an early planting start. All those days in the high 70's to low 80's with mild overnight lows can seem like a year ago when Jack Frost is threatening a cameo on the edge of a sweeping northern front. Here, March 15th serves well as a final frost date. The first day of spring certainly does put Old Man winter to bed for us.
And as March rolls ahead bringing the "official" start of spring, my thoughts linger on the weather. We've written about the importance of making a weather map when planning farm outlay strategies. March is one of those months that the weather starts shifting and paying attention to that is critical.
We're still technically in Florida's "dry season", and this March is living up to that moniker. Dirty rooster tails plume from the backs of passing cars along our farm's dusty road frontage. That being said, rainy season starts in May followed quickly by hurricane season. But, for now we'll be happy to just let all that loom large for a bit. A previous life taught me that killing off Eager Beaver passions is good for your wallet. Best to just try and time a good planting in front of some rain. For now, an ear towards the weatherman we must lend.
But, before we get too much into looking forward, a brief look back at the lion of March's early roar is in order. Late February served up a little wind storm that gave us some surprises, least of which was putting our high tensile fencing through it's paces, and made some immediate and future work for us.
After bucking a tree off the perimeter seven strand high tensile fence, a little walk around the property revealed how strong the winds were. Mother Nature threw a pretty good fastball our way and lets just say we're lucky that it wasn't worse. I believe some straight line winds strafed the farm dealing most of the damage.
So, as we welcome the first day of spring and begin playing planting's "hurry up and wait" game, enjoy some images Mother Nature created for us in the final days of February, 2015.
In 2014 a couple of 40-somethings decided to make a change. The purchase of 10 raw, pine scrub acres along Florida's Nature Coast started it all. This is that story.