You know of my trials with my magnolia tree. Of my feeble and broadly ineffective attempts to repel, repulse, fend off, and otherwise discourage the local scurry of squirrels from munching through the emerging flower buds every Spring.
Last week, after I had spilled water-and-cayenne on every available surface near the tree and its adjacent fence, things seemed to be going well. The buds were so close to swelling past the point-of-interest for the local rodents–some milestone of development invisible to the human eye–and turning pink before my eyes. Maybe we were home-free.
Then it snowed and the overnight temps dropped into true frost territory, not once but twice. Within a few days those wannabe blooms were littering the ground under the tree. Frost-bit, I assume, and brittle – so brittle that a stupid, sniffing, clumsy, trespassing, obnoxious squirrel would break them off easily. Nay, callously carelessly.
Harsh off-season frost.
Earth blushes with your victims:
We’ll see what the second wave brings. I don’t want to despair just yet. Let’s see what another famous poet has to say about it.
If it be now, ’tis not to come.
If it be not to come, it will be now.
If it be not now, yet it will come — the readiness is all.
And yet I can’t be quite as sanguine. The magnolia makes a good-faith effort to bloom, but if ’tis thwarted twice, goes straight to leaves, readiness be damned.
The flowers are worth some effort, says me, but I do understand working to schedule.