Every couple of days plants emerge from dormancy surprising us as we weed around the stubs of their root crown. The Lantana sent out half a dozen leaves this week, the Black and Blue Salvia has three leaves at the base of the roots, the Black Lace Elderberry, in its third year, is coming into its own with pink flowers on top of 4-foot tall stems.
Another Salvia I started from seed 2 years ago is 3-feet tall and has buds. Out of 50-seedlings, there are 5 plants that are successful. The hydrangeas and lilies have lots of buds, and I've already had to take the clippers to the hops vine.
In the photo (below) you'll see part of the side yard. There is a Martin birdhouse stand on the far left. (Of course, Grackles live in it.)
Just to the right of the Grackle house, you'll see a couple of small oak trees. When we moved into this property 10 years ago, we planted a tree in that spot. It died.
Then, the next year another tree, etc. The trees in the photo have been in place for three years and now will probably make it to become large shade trees.
Many people we know shoot Grackles and other birds considered undesirable. But, we are not among them. One neighbor said he would like to shoot them for us. We declined his generous offer.
As we search the beds for plants that returned from last year's efforts, the birds stay busy raising the next generation of feathered friends that make a green spot into a garden.