Another Spring surprise
By Clif Knight
A cool and rainy spring pulled another trick from its basket of weather surprises last weekend at the University of Missouri where near-freezing temperatures prevailed during
a long ball baseball game between the host Missouri Tigers and Alabama Crimson Tide.
Winter storm conditions were even more prevalent in the Rocky Mountain regions of the country as freezing weather and a heavy blanket of snow put most outdoor activities on hold.
A few fans showed up for the game, covered from head to foot in toboggans, hoods blankets and heavy coats. The number dwindled noticeably after the first couple of innings with the Tide leading 4-0. Only a handful remained to witness the final score, 10-4. Weather was the crowd breaker. I didn’t’ seem to affect the players. The Tide accounted for15 hits s and five homers. The Tigers had had four runs with three homers.
Fortunately, spring weather was dominant in the Deep South. Aside from a thundershower Thursday night, farmers, gardeners and outdoor enthusiasts had a week of uninterrupted sunshine and spring-like temperatures. The dry days worked a miracle draining wet soil and making low-lying garden spots suitable for tilling and planting.
Some of the shrubbery in the landscape at our home has apparently suffered damage from the below-freezing days we had back in December. A check of what appears to be dead limbs on some shrubs has shown no sign of survival, and these will have to be removed and replanted. On others, growth has been retarded but is sprouting new growth at the root level and will apparently recover fully in time.
As I have noted in prior columns, the blooming of blackberry vines is a sure sign that the danger of a killing frost is gone and it’s safe to plant any variety of vegetable. This includes tomato and pepper plants as well at squash, cucumbers, green beans and butter beans.
The opening of Hartselle Farmers Market is scheduled on Saturday at 7 a.m. A limited number of fruits and vegetables, including strawberries and greens, are expected. Tomatoes and other vegetables will be offered later.