Today Daisy and I spent several hours hiking, heading first to Lawson's Fork to see what early wildflowers might be blooming. Last year I found a large patch of Rue Anemone down there, and since they are definitely blooming over on Meetinghouse Creek I assumed they'd be out. But just because they are blooming in one place, it doesn't mean they are blooming elsewhere, even in the same neighborhood!
We wandered the shore along the creek, keeping an eye out for blooms. We found none, but Daisy had a fine time jumping onto the muddy bank, into the water and out again, and it was beautiful - twisting Mountain Laurel trunks, arching branches of Dog Hobble, the gray haze of pre-spring hardwood forest. But no flowers yet, no unfurling fern fronds.
We finally settled next to a pine close to home to draw our official state wildflower, Carolina Jessamine, the vine growing from the base of a pine and intertwined with the invasive Japanese Honeysuckle. The tangle gets even more involved around the other side of the tree, where Coral Honeysuckle joins the fray. A Dogwood is in bud beside it all, and at some point in April, all of these plants will be in bloom.
Mountain Laurel and Dog Hobble along the river
Mountain Laurel Trunk