Spring Unfolds, late March

Harbinger of spring, Raccoon Creek Wildflower Reserve, 24 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)

29 March 2021

For more than a week the temperature has not dipped below freezing in western Pennsylvania, providing a chance to watch spring unfold.

On 24 March at Raccoon Creek Wildflower Reserve my walking route took me past harbinger of spring (top), hazelnut catkins, skunk cabbage, spring beauties and cutleaf toothwort.

Hazelnut catkins, Raccoon Creek Wildflower Reserve, 24 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)
Skunk cabbage after the flood, Raccoon Creek Wildflower Reserve, 24 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)
Spring beauty, Raccoon Creek Wildflower Reserve, 24 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)
Cutleaf toothwort about to bloom, Raccoon Creek Wildflower Reserve, 24 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)

On 26 March my favorite northern magnolia in Schenley Park began to bloom.

Northern magnolia flower, Schenley Park, 26 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)

The buds looked like this only three days before.

Northern magnolia bud, Schenley Park, 23 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)

I also found spicebush in bloom, bottlebrush buckeye leaf out, and Ohio buckeye buds bursting.

Spicebush in bloom, Schenley Park, 26 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)
Bottlebrush buckeye leaf out, Schenley Park, 26 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)
Ohio buckeye bud, Schenley Park, 26 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)
Ohio buckeye bursting buds, Schenley Park, 26 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)

The trees are still bare but European willows provide a spot of green and maple flowers add a hint of red and orange.

Bare trees lean toward the light at Pymatuning Lake, 27 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)
Flowering sugar maple, Pymatuning State Park, 27 March 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)

Tonight the temperature will dip close to freezing in the city and will reach a low of 24 degrees on the night of April Fools Day. No fooling! Get outdoors before that happens. Many flowers will be brown on April 2.

(photos by Kate St. John)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *