Frosty is the word that pretty much sums up the morning on Roundtop Mountain. Last night was cold enough for snow but as nothing fell from the sky, it didn’t. The past few weeks I‘ve spent a lot of time hauling summer plants in and out the front door of the cabin. The plants are sun-deprived if I keep them inside, but the nights are too cold for them. So they are trundled in and out on most days. This morning was even too cold to put them outside for the day, but they can stand a lack of sun for one day.
I am starting to lose track of how much and how quickly the weather is changing this year. Winter was cold and snowy; March was warm, even hot; April was dry and mostly cold. The mountain has gotten some relief lately from the dry weather, but the cold persists.
This year the redbud have been pretty nice, the dogwood not so much. I don’t know if the dogwood are suffering from the fungus I keep hearing about or if they don’t like this season’s odd weather. The quality and quantity of both redbud and dogwood vary from year to year anyway, so it can be hard to tell. One year the redbud is prettiest, the next it’s the dogwood. In a really good year both redbud and dogwood are lush and budding at the same time. That doesn’t happen all that often, but when it does the result is worth the wait.
What scares me a little about the dogwood fungus, named anthracnose, is that it’s supposed to thrive in rainy, cool spring weather. The cool part has been much in abundance this April. I’m hoping the limited rainfall this spring helps to keep that away from here. The fungus is hardest on trees that are stressed, and as far as I can tell, the native dogwood around the cabin are healthy—but I keep checking the leaves whenever I see one of the trees.