An early spring for 2012?

Well, the winter of 2012 has so far been remarkably balmy in Wicklow, although the landscape has been battered by fierce storm winds for three days. However, it’s not frosty and the plants are all acting as though they think it’s spring already. According to Irish tradition, and the usual behaviour of the wildlife, spring begins on St. Brigid’s Day, which falls on February 1, which is not too long from now. However, as everyone knows, true spring (astronomical spring) begins with the Vernal Equinox in March. But Ireland is an island and weather does what it likes, especially when riding on the warm Gulf Stream which emanates from the Caribbean. Many summer flowers are still happily flowering in gardens, and since December the wild Primroses have been above ground, and they are now already flowering. Primroses can withstand being covered in a layer of snow, but they are very much a spring flower, and here is one I photographed this afternoon!

Blossoming wild Primrose - Primula vulgaris.

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