Last year, Portland had a late frost which impacted a lot of fruit crops. Everything seemed to be about 3-4 weeks late all season long as a result. I think earlier crops, like cherries, were more severely damaged. Without a late frost (knock on wood), things are exploding outside.

This is one of our two cherry trees blooming in the backyard. I am hoping those bees are doing their thing to pollinate, but I might try some hand pollination to help ensure more cherries. It feels magical to walk around on a nice day and have white cherry blossoms come raining in around you.

I planted a ton of bulbs the first fall we were living here: tulips, daffodils, crocus. Three years later, they have multiplied to really fill in the open spaces. I have never seen them with such large blooms! Maybe it’s the sheet mulching? Or maybe they took a couple years to gather enough energy to really show off. Or maybe it’s the fact that the chickens are clucking in their coop and not free-ranging right now so the tulips can grow undisturbed, without trying to survive the occasional chicken stampede.

We have about six currants on the property, with four in the backyard planted about three years ago. The first year they survived. The second year they started to really branch out. And this third year I am hoping for a bumper crop. Although their light green blossoms can be hard to notice at first, I enjoy their delicate nature and the promise of tangy berries this summer.

I can’t capture it all in three pictures, but I am enjoying every sunny moment of it. Even with rainy days like today, I bundle up with a heavy sweater and open all the windows. The clucking from the chickens drifts in with the pitter-patter of the rain. I can smell the cherry blossoms as I sit sipping cups of tea. And I quietly think of what a lucky girl I am to be among all of this.

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