Letter: Harbingers of spring, and it’s only autumn

Posted 10/29/20

To the editor:

If it’s a gray day and if you are lucky and if you are where there are overhead trees in a damp area, you might see our native Witch Hazel in fluffy, leafless, yellow bloom …

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Letter: Harbingers of spring, and it’s only autumn

Posted

To the editor:

If it’s a gray day and if you are lucky and if you are where there are overhead trees in a damp area, you might see our native Witch Hazel in fluffy, leafless, yellow bloom — not as striking as the Chinese variety which has been introduced and which blooms in February to gladden our hearts with the promise of spring. 

Our native variety has long been used as a soothing lotion for the skin, first by our local Indians who then taught the English settlers who then made a factory on the banks of the Connecticut River which now produces gallons for lotions, creams etc. Buy some and see if the scent doesn’t take you back.to childhood.

The other harbinger of spring, or so I thought, was bluebirds, Wrong. Now I find I have two neighbors who see them all winter long. One feeds suet cakes embedded with mealy worms, the other puts out scraps of yarn from knitting projects and finds little nests with charmingly laid out pieces. I have seen them only once at my bird bath when five young ones gathered to have a drink. 

We will be having a warm winter with La Nina keeping our fuel bills low but perhaps damaging apple and peach trees if they think spring has come early. We shall see. Please do all you can to stay safe. 

Sidney Tynan

Little Compton

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Scott Pickering has been on the East Bay Newspapers team for more than two decades, since starting as a reporter for the Sakonnet Times. He's been editor of most of the papers, was Managing Editor of all the papers for many years, and became General Manager in 2012. Today he can be found posting to EastBayRI.com, steering news coverage, writing editorials, talking to readers, working with the sales team, collaborating on design, or helping do whatever it takes to get the papers out the door. Reach him at spickering@eastbaynewspapers.com.