Early Spring – Good or Bad?

Well, if your weather is anything like mine, it’s looking like we’re in for an early, dry spring.  Part of me is thinking, “Ooooh yea, I was tired of all that cold weather.” Then the other part of me is thinking, “Is that a tick?” I’ll be making adjustments to my prepping routines over the next few months to adjust for the possible outcomes of this interesting weather.  I’m hoping the awesome SHTF readers will add a couple more to my list.

I’m in a happy mood, so let’s start with the good first.

Using the warmth – We’ve been able to get the laundry out to line dry much earlier this year. The abundant sun is good for the diapers and towels, being a natural bleaching agent. The heater hasn’t been in use much lately. Both those things combined save us a lot of money.  We’ve all been able to get out and exercise.  We don’t pay for gym memberships, when the ice and snow settle in, we stay active by shoveling and skiing, but not nearly as much as we do in warmer seasons. So, for an active toddler and a pregnant mama, it’s great to be able to get out of the house and do some walking and gardening.  Hubby has already pulled out the bike and trailer for errand running; another money saver.

Gardening adjustments – There’s a chance this could mean more food, faster, from my garden plot. I’m seeing garlic up already. Warmer soil means happier sweet potatoes and tomatoes and beans. (And okra, if you’re a fan like me.)  I’m just hoping I haven’t already missed my window for the cooler spring crops like spinach and peas. I’ve already had to do more watering than I’m used to. From the tap, to top off the strangeness. I don’t have a drop in my rain barrel yet.  I’m being very conscientious about my mulching, I figure if we’re this dry now, it could get much worse by summer.

Storage adjustments  – The main one I’ve discussed with hubby is stocking up on some maple syrup. The sap run seemed really short here, and my East Coast sources are reporting the same thing.  I’m thinking maple syrup could be in short supply this year. Just in case prices or supply reach extremes, I’m thinking I’ll make some fruit syrups this spring.  I am hoping for good fruit crops, as long as they are getting enough water, I think most will do well with the early sun and warmth. Speaking of fruit, we’ve lost the last of our storage apples with the warmth, our cold storage is now decidedly NOT COLD.

Just Bad – Of course, earlier warmth means an earlier start to tornado and storm weather. Earlier warmth means earlier snow melt and perhaps a longer dry season. Insufficient cold days means more invasive and annoying species survive to breed and suck my blood in the spring.  (Or vine around my trees if we’re talking about something like kudzu.) More deer/rabbit/voles survive to nibble on my garden veggies.

Keep an eye on things, but enjoy the warmth.  Did I miss anything that you’re adjusting for? Do share!

– Calamity Jane