Local Seasons

I was catching up on Pete Carroll’s blog, and in one entry he commented that he knew that spring had finally arrived because his pond had filled with frogs.

It’s nice to have little local indicators that Spring has sprung, or that other seasonal shifts and changes have occurred.

The weather patterns for Kansas have been very off this year. It has been unseasonably cold so far, and this week we are facing record highs. But there are a few seasonal indicators that we can rely upon to tell that Spring has finally arrived.

The Bradford Pear trees bloomed a while back. For anyone not familiar with these trees, in early Spring they produce beautiful white blossoms for about two weeks. Those beautiful blossoms unfortunately emit a noxious odor that closely resembles a stale trashcan filled with used condoms.

That’s normally a good indicator of Spring. This year it failed, as the pretty white blossoms were covered in a few inches of snow and were killed off.

So our major indicator of Spring in Kansas is on its way soon: Tornado Season. It has been much delayed by the unseasonable cold, but this weekend is forecast to begin a week-long deluge of daily severe thunderstorms that bring flash floods, hail, and tornadoes. (If you’re not from the Midwest, it sounds much scarier than it is.) And that is the true sign that the wheel is turning.

We have other seasonal indicators, including geese migrating to and from Canada, as well as seagulls and pigeons. During the winter we get bald eagles out here, fishing on the rivers. Most of our trees lose their foliage relatively late.

Apparently on the East Coast they have hordes of cicadae emerging, and this is a seasonal indicator up there. I know that the Northeast has exceptional color shows compliments of their forests come Autumn. I’m not too sure what other major weather patterns or migratory activities denoted seasonal change in other regions.

So if I have any readers that notice or keep track of such things, what seasonal change indicators do you look for where you live? How do those indicators and seasonal changes match up to the Wicca Wheel of the Year? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

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