Finally we’ve been getting the kind of warm, sunny days that make it clear that spring has arrived. Last weekend people were out working in their yards, strolling the streets of Edgartown, hiking and biking, and even playing on the beach. This time of year people working outside, at least this week, have it way better than the inside ones.
My yard has started to look really good — mainly as a result of the contrasting green grass and yellow daffodils against the gray leafless branches of the surrounding woods. The lure of my yard in this pre-mosquito period is so strong that I sometimes find myself outside raking a garden bed or pulling up weeds without even fully realizing I’ve left my computer or stack of bills. I thought I was just going to open the door and take a look.
It’s still so peaceful in the yard — only the songs and calls of the birds, the breeze in the branches, the ocean in the distance — no sounds of lawnmowers, motorboats, or biplanes yet. New birds keep showing up, too. I’ve seen towees and heard their “drink-your-tea” call, but I haven’t yet seen any catbirds. They’re about the last to arrive and I’ve seen fewer of them in recent years.
For those who would like to contribute to the good of gardens beyond their own yard, on Saturday, May 3 from 9 a.m. to noon there will be a spring planting and garden cleanup at Mytoi. The Trustees of Reservation will provide lunch as a thank-you for spending a spring morning caring for the Island’s only public Japanese-style garden. Bring your own work gloves, rakes, and shovels, and come anytime throughout the morning. If you plan to attend, call 508-693-7662.
According to a news update from Terry Forde, president of the Chappaquiddick Island Association, the Edgartown Yacht Club is in the process of purchasing the Zizza property, next to the Chappy Beach Club, to house their youth sailing program. Because of the increase in tidal flow, the inner harbor has become less safe for fledgling sailors. There will be a hearing before the board of health for a new septic system, and also one with the conservation commission.
Terry also reports there will be an association-sponsored Chappy collection of hazardous materials on Saturday, May 17 from 7 to 9 a.m. at the community center. You can bring used motor oil, stale gasoline, kerosene, diesel fuel, oil paint (not latex), herbicides and insecticides, among other materials.
This is the third year osprey have had a nest on a telephone pole along the road to my house. Each year a pair of osprey have spent lots of time at the nest in the beginning of the season, and I become hopeful they’ll have some babies. But each year none appear and, as the summer wears on, the ospreys spend less time there, using it as just one of their perches along Cape Pogue Pond and the swamp inland.
Last fall the whole nest was removed from the telephone pole — I guess it can interfere with electric service — and a special osprey pole erected about 50 feet away. I wondered what the osprey would think of the new location. About a week ago I noticed the osprey back rebuilding the nest on the same telephone pole. It’s a messy home with sticks hanging down, but the osprey do a lot of work carrying branches over and tamping them down. The nest is pretty substantial now — and again I’m hopeful.
After the full moon last Sunday, the sky has been clear each still night. I’ve watched the huge luminous moon rise up through the oak branches in my yard accompanied by choirs of peepers and the distant roar of surf on the south shore — a peaceful time.