Someone stuck a few roses in the sand here and there at the beach today. So Happy Valentine’s Day from a stranger, the Atlantic Ocean, and me. I hope your day is full of love.
Our old spot on the High Line
It’s covered in red petals
Pieces of my heart
At the beach last week, this apricot-burgundy iris had a great day in the breezy sunshine.
Let’s each pick one and use them as our fairy wands while we play
The dogwood flowers are gone now
What is the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Newark, New Jersey? The airport, maybe? It probably isn’t the home of the nation’s largest collection of cherry blossoms, and yet that can be found in good old Newark.
Branch Brook Park, listed on both the New Jersey (1980) and National (1981) Registers of Historic Places, is home to more than 4,000 cherry trees, according to the park’s website.
The park began in 1865, when the city, along with the newly created Essex County Park Commission, made plans to transform a former Civil War Army training ground into public use as a park. This became the nation’s first county park.
Donations from wealthy families expanded the park in the following years. The cherry trees were a gift from the Mrs. Felix Fuld family in 1927.
I was lucky to visit during peak blooming, and I spent several lovely hours viewing the cherry blossoms.
We had a warm streak in early March that lasted long enough to trick the early flowering trees into blossoming. Too soon, little flowers, too soon. The snow stuck around for a day or two, followed soon by another storm with much colder temperatures and more snow.
Finally, a month after this photo was taken, the time was right for the trees to begin opening.
It seems that weather patterns have been disrupted lately. Winters are not predictable as they once were, turning into a mixture of a heat wave one week and an arctic blast the next.
These trees that I photographed are decorative—planted in my neighborhood to look pretty and not to provide food. But these same erratic weather patterns are affecting and will continue to affect our fruit trees, other crops, and food supply. For example, fruit and nut trees need a certain amount of cold weather, or “chill hours,” in winter in order to produce fruit during the growing season. Peach farmers in Georgia are expecting an even worse year than last year’s crop yield, in part due to record low amounts of chilling hours.
Let’s hope we can stop climate change before we run out of food.