Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Fall Fancies - Confused Nature

With our unseasonable mild weather and lack of snow, nature is confused. Shouldn't it be winter, it thinks.  The daylight is at its shortest. But other indications scream "spring".  What's a plant to do?

Back on November 7 I blogged about a confused cherry in a local superarket parkling lot in Johnson City, New York.  As of Saturday, it was still in bloom. 

Now we are in December and nature continues to be confused.

These pictures were taken on the West Side of Binghamton, in upstate New York - some on December 9, some the week before.

Lamium (spotted dead nettle) in bloom, with more blooms forthcoming.

A confused forsythia. 

Snapdragons.  True, these may have been sheltered by being near a house foundation and mulched with stone - but I don't think I've ever seen any still in bloom this late in the year.

But, some plants aren't fooled.  There is this plant --- snowberry.  The berries remind you of something we are lacking - not that I am complaining - snow.  Of course, I don't know if this plant would have leaves in December....

My guest plant expert says:
The U.S.  is home to a number of Symphoricarpos, this is albus.   (Some of the hybrids between this and others in the clan yield a gorgeous coral-pink berry, a berry like this but with the mixed coloring of this and the redder smaller-berried species.)  All the Symphoricarpos are great cover, nesting sites and food for birds.  And tough as nails.

Is nature confused where you live?

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