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Too Early for Spring?

March 25, 2012

If you frequent Highland Park, you become use to the rhythm of its seasons….

Daffodils on the Hill at Highland Park

Daffodils on the Hill at Highland Park.
Photo taken April 30, 2006 – Click on image to see larger version

….as these play out among the many collections growing across our botanical reserve.  The naturalized Daffodils usually appear in Mid to Late April or very early May.

Path through the Magnolias

Magnolia Path on May 9, 2007. Click on Photo for Larger Version

The Magnolia Collection takes star billing a couple of weeks later and the several varieties of Flowering Cherries near the Lamberton Conservatory often hang on to give a spectacular counterpoint to the peaking of the early lilacs.   But March of 2012 broke with all these patterns as  Highland Park was affected by the very unusual spring that visited most of the United States.

Yoshino Flowering Cherry Tree near Lamberton Conservatory – Photo Taken May 10, 2008

In fact,  during March 2012, the nation set a record for setting high temperature records,  with 6,199 local maximum daily temperatures broken and 1,556  tied for a total of  7,755.    This contrasts with the national statistics for same month in 2011 where only  a total  of 1,379 records were set or matched and  only 749 of the same during 2001.   ( The unusual warming trend would continue in our area through early April)

So this March brought out blossoms of Magnolia, Daffodils, Flowering Cherry and Plums between one month to six weeks earlier than I have been able to record since beginning my own digital photo diary in 1999.  The gallery below was created on March 25, 2012 and you might compare the date of the other three photos on this page for contrast.    I think you will agree that, regardless of the timing of the seasons – or lack thereof, Rochester’s Highland Botanical Park always has the potential for amazing vistas in any month or year.

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