Tim and I share a birthday. For years we have done something on that day. Yesterday was no exception. This year we opted for a quiet day in the bosque and along the banks of the Rio Grande. It was a spectacular, cloudless afternoon. We saw a lot of crows, some geese, and a couple of cranes. Over the next couple of weeks many more cranes will be arriving. Yesterday, above all, colors took center stage.
Silver, one of the Price cats, seemed to be watching for his people’s return. As you can see, Tim had cameras with him.
Spring Has Sprung: Easter and April Fool’s Day in Albuquerque, 2018
Spring has sprung in Albuquerque! Although the sky was overcast most of the day, the temperature was pleasant and no wind was blowing.
The dwarf peach ‘Bonanza’ had begun to bloom when we got a hard freeze. I was afraid no peaches would form this year. And, for a variety of reasons, I had not photographed the tree at the height of its bloom. But, one bloom was left today. An extra bonus was that I could see one or two peaches were just beginning to develop!
Although the flowering Bradford pear trees around town have bloomed out, the pear trees in my yard have just begun to bloom. Some of you may remember that I have a pollinator pear that produces fruit the birds love. The smaller tree produces pears that people love.
Pansies and crocus (the crocus from a couple of weeks ago) round out today’s spring offerings.
Finally, I hope you have had a wonderful day wherever you are!
Signs of spring are popping up and out everywhere. Here in the high desert, we could still experience winter, of course. But the days that speak of Spring are so glorious. I like the Ernest Hemingway quote:
“When spring came, even the false spring, there were no problems except where to be happiest.”
This may be false spring, or, given climate change, may be the beginning of real spring. I’m going to enjoy these early signs.
The bright little crocus are one of the earliest, easily spotted, harbingers of Spring.
But, there are numerous, though subtle, signs that Spring is on the way.
Rose ‘Buffalo Gal,” a hybrid rugosa, beginning to leaf out.
This developing birch catkin says, “Spring is on the way.”
Rosemary is known for the flavor it adds to food more than delicate blue flowers, but the flowers are pretty.
A dwarf peach, “Bonanza,” is one of my favorite specimen plants. I was surprised to see this little bud beginning to show just a touch a color. It really is too early, but it does speak to the hope of Spring.
I hope you are enjoying beautiful weather wherever you are.
“Albuquerque Winter” may make some people laugh. Although we do see flashes of it here in town, they usually are neither long nor severe. The State of New Mexico depends on mountain snowpack for water.
The end of last week and Saturday saw spring-like temperatures, and sunny, brilliant days. Sunday morning’s wind hinted at change to come. Compare Sunday’s sunrise to that of Saturday’s (in the prior post). In addition to the clouds blowing along in the sky, note the cloud bank rolling over the top of the Sandias.
As the sun set Sunday night, the winds increased, and rain fell briefly. Within a matter of minutes, the rain turned to snow. Thankfully, the winds died down. I awoke this morning to a beautiful, soft snow.
The snow is already melting, and the streets are clear. However, more snow is due tonight into tomorrow. We do need the moisture, and if it does not last too long, it will just be part of a typical Albuquerque winter.
Image New Mexico 2015, begun by Pat Berrett and Tim Anderson, will be held again this year at Matrix Fine Art, which has hosted the show for the past several years. This is a juried photography show, and there are no restrictions on where the photographers live, but the images must have been created in New Mexico in the last two years. I am pleased to be showing two images this year, ‘The Observer/The Observed’ and ‘Harry’s Pearl’s,’ the latter from the series, ‘Living Jewels.’
Regular readers here have seen ‘The Observer/The Observed’ before. I created the image for myself in the dark days of January 2015, and did not intend to show it. But, after writer, fellow anthropologist, and friend Jim Stallings wrote a poem about it as a gift to me and my family, I decided to show it. It was in Insight New Mexico – Through Her Eyes and is currently on display at the University of New Mexico Continuing Education North Building until August 15.
Spontaneous Poem from a Treetop Crow
In the lofty life of a wise old crow
Swaying in the topmost backyard branches
Like a magical clock counting down mortality’s coil,
May it not be in some secret way
We the awed observers
Have all along been honored by a wiser watcher?
– Jim Stallings
The second image is from my ‘Living Jewels’ series. Flower arrangers are quite familiar with the dwarf tree, Harry Lauder’s Walking Stick. This spring, here in Albuquerque, Harry put on an outstanding display of male catkins. I have titled this image ‘Harry’s Pearls.’
Matrix Fine Art is located in Albuquerque’s historic Nob Hill on the south side of Central Avenue (old Route 66), 2 1/2 blocks east of Carlisle between Solano and Aliso. The address is 3812 Central Ave. SE, Albuquerque, NM 87108.
All images are available for purchase.
Exhibition dates: July 3 – 31, 2015
Sneak Preview: June 30 – July 2, 2015
First Friday Artscrawl Reception: Friday, July 3, 2015, 5:00 – 8:00 pm
If you are here in the Albuquerque area, I’d like to invite you to the opening reception on Friday, July 3, from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm. If you’ll be passing through Albuquerque some time in July, I invite you to stop at Matrix Fine Art to view Image New Mexico 2015.
Sunrise here in New Mexico holds the potential to always surprise. Today was no exception. The sunrise views usually seen from my home show the Sandias in the background, and a colorful sky. There was some of that this morning. But what made today a bit unusual was the colorful show to the North.
The skies of New Mexico, “Land of Enchantment,” never disappoint, whether they are the cloudless turquoise skies of much of the year, or the brilliant colors of many of our sunrises and sunsets, or the impressive storm clouds of our monsoon season.
I never cease to be amazed, however, at how different our sky can be, minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day, season by season. I cannot remember seeing such a brilliantly colored sunrise to the North before.
Autumn is the most glorious time in New Mexico, for so many reasons.
As 2014 draws to an end, a winter storm is bearing down to ring in the New Year. This seemed a good day to revisit one of the spectacular autumn days on the Rio Grande.
The large trees are cottonwood trees. Cottonwoods are found along the Rio Grande, but not far out from it. They are some of the major trees of a southwest forest along the Rio Grande, a forest referred to as “the bosque.” New Mexicans love the bosque, and Albuquerque has miles of bike and walking trails through and along the bosque.
This particular image is from Corrales, New Mexico, and the Rio Grande is just out of the image to the east. The mountains you glimpse are the Sandias.
Yesterday so much was blooming that the beauty was almost overwhelming: flowers on the ground, and flowering trees. The air was filled with sweet scents wafting by.
Images of the redbuds will be posted in a subsequent post.
Here are images of two of the flowering trees with white blossoms. I do not know the names of these trees, only that they were beautiful and had a wonderful scent. The images do not begin to convey their beauty in reality.
Warmer days of Spring have finally arrived in Albuquerque, and the trees are beginning to respond.
One of my favorite trees is the Japanese maple. Even in the best of years, Albuquerque is not the ideal spot to grow a Japanese maple – too hot and dry. By the middle of summer, mine definitely shows it does not belong here. But it is glorious in the spring. It is just now barely beginning to show tiny leaves.
Another maple, a silver maple, is beginning to drop its seeds. I love these – they spin through the air as they fall, and kids of all ages love them! There is not much hope for this one, however. It fell on dry, parched, cracked earth from the several years of severe drought of which we remain in the midst. It is only early April, and the city has already announced that fines have been doubled this year for water violations. One month last year I got a whopping surcharge (not a water violation charge) for using more than I should have, and I can guarantee that this year I will not get a surcharge or a water violation charge!!!
When we are not in the midst of severe drought, birch trees do pretty well in the Albuquerque area. Mine this year are producing a bumper crop of the male catkins, which I almost think of as a bad sign, almost a desperate attempt to reproduce before dying, which one of my birches seems to be considering. The catkins are quite attractive in the spring, as the female cones are later in the year.
Spring brings hope, and this year is no different as I see the trees in this part of the seasonal cycle. But all around me, I also see the effects of a severe drought we have been in for several years now, with no sign of relief in the near future. As water restrictions require me to cut back on watering, the trees will be the last thing I let go, because they are so important in providing shade, nesting spots for birds, and many other environmental factors. And I keep hoping for rain. . .