Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Fast Forward

(post by Jason) There is an old saying that you need to wait till the oak leaves are as big as a mouse's ear before you plant your corn to avoid the risk of a late spring frost. I honestly don't know when that happened here in Middle Tennessee since everything happened so fast this spring. However I can tell you with some certainty that as of today the white oaks in our yard are in full leaf and the leaves are the size of my hand or bigger. I can also tell you that the last time this happened this early was in April 2007. During the first week of April that year we had three mornings in a row with a hard frost and my six inch tall sweet corn got frozen back to the ground, oak leaves be damned.

This year spring seems to be stuck on fast forward. We've had plenty of moisture and we've been at or over 80 degrees consistently since early March. I can't believe how much the grass is growing in our pastures and hay fields. Even the warm season grasses greened up in mid March and have begun to actively grow. Some of the cool season grasses are only a few days away from heading out. Many of our local dairy farmers are putting up their first crop of haylage (chopped wilted green grass) right now. If the weather stays stuck on warm and wet we may well be putting up dry hay before the end of the month which is at least two weeks ahead of normal and fully three weeks ahead of last year.

While a few horses have already finished, most of them are somewhere in the process of shedding winter coats. Earlier today Melissa and I had a discussion on what colour horse hair showed up the worst and persisted longest on clothing and bare (sweaty) skin. We both agreed that grey hair hung on the longest. With more warm weather in the forecast it looks like we won't be going far without our shedding blades for awhile yet !______________________


Gus and George grooming


Rampal hanging out and resting his head on Johnny


Hemi, Baby, Apollo, Moe
Hemi, Baby, Apollo and Moe

Thor, Walden, Fabrizzio, Lucky
Thor, Walden, Fabrizzio, Lucky


lytha said...

ugh, greys. they get the filthiest, and make us the filthiest.

i'm not sure when to start my greenhouse either, because the weather is fickle: some freezes at night, some shorts weather in the day (ok i wore shorts the other day and it was only 8C).

i bought some flowers at the hardware store and they've all died from the cold nights.

the pasture is dragged and has lovely soccer field stripes, it's fertilized, and finally the grass is starting to come in but there's still no rush to get the lawn mower out.

it's finally happening, spring, and i really doubted it this year.

SmartAlex said...

I concur. Grey hair is the worst!

Vivian, Apollo's Mom said...

It's already hotter than h--- here and very little rain. I've already seen signs of summer fungus on the rear legs! If this keeps up, summer in Fl. will be NASTY this year!

Funder said...

Don't talk to me. There was a sprinkling of snow on the ground this morning, and a chance of more tonight. And WHITE hair has to be even worse than grey hair. The Indian fellow at the gas station was like "What is... hair on your shirt?" today. ARGH.