Items tagged with 'spring'

Spring plant sales 2017

cornell cooperative extension albany county plant sale 2013

The very popular Cornell Cooperative Extension garden education day and plant sale in Voorheesville.

May is here and it's time for garden planning and planting. There are a bunch of plants sales around the Capital Region coming up over the next few weeks to help you fill out your garden (or container on a deck, or window box, or wherever).

Here's a quick list of some upcoming plant sales...

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Good place for buying spring/Easter plants?

asiatic lily closeupKristin emails:

I am looking for a local nursery that sells beautiful Spring/Easter plants, such as lillies, hyacinths, tulips, etc.With the first day of spring (almost) behind us, and the holiday approaching, I am hoping your readers can provide some good suggestions!

These sorts of plants seem to pop up in all sorts of stores around this time of year, often packaged for easy giving. But, as Kristin mentions, we suspect you're going to find the best selection and quality at a local nursery or a shop that regularly deals in flowers.

Got a favorite spot for buying these types of plants? Please share!

Today's moment of spring

crocus blooms 2016-03-11

It's the annual "Hey, look, crocus blooms!" photo.

Just out of curiosity we looked through the archives today for when we've posted crocus pics in the past. The dates: March 17 (2010) March 19 (2012) April 11 (2011), April 13 (2015).

So it's probably fair to say it's an early crocus year.

Ice cream stand season 2016

jims tastee freez bethlehem 2014-August

The Tastee Freez is always one of the first places to open, and this year is no exception.

Updated March 17

Spring, it is near. And ice cream stand season has started!

A few stands are already open (or will be very soon), and more will be opening in the next few weeks.

Here's our annual rundown of a bunch of seasonal ice cream stands, with opening dates. In some cases the dates are TBA, or we just couldn't find out (yet). So if you can fill in some of the information in the comments, we'd very much appreciate it.

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Ways to spend an early spring weekend with visitors from out of town?

purple crocus macroAlisa emails:

Easter and Passover are fast approaching and I have a question a bit different from the typical holiday happenings.
Family with small children are coming into town and I would love ideas of things to do with them beyond the typical holiday meals, religious services and Easter egg hunts. What have you got for a dad and his three year old daughter from out of town?

Passover starts April 3 this year, and Easter is April 5. Let's hope things are noticeably more spring-y by then, because it'd be great to get outside and soak up sunshine and celebrate the changing of the season.

A short trip somewhere in the area? Maybe people have some ideas for a few kid-friendly early spring destinations.

Got a suggestion for Alisa? Please share!

A whole bunch of gardening classes

garlic shoot spring garden

Soon.

The sun is shining, the snow is melting, and spring will be here soon. (Current status: So ready for spring.)

So now is a good time to be giving some thought to garden plans for the spring and summer -- whether it's just a few flowers, tomatoes in containers on the porch, or raised beds in the backyard. Toward that end there a whole bunch of garden classes / info sessions coming up around the area, on topics ranging from seed starting to composting to backyard chickens.

Here's a quick scan of upcoming classes...

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Ice cream stand season 2015

jims tastee freez bethlehem 2014-August

The Tastee Freez in Bethlehem is already open. (This photo's from last summer -- obviously.)

Breaking: Ice cream stand season has started.

Jim's Tastee Freez is already open. The Snowman opens later this week. And a bunch of other stands will open over the next few weeks.

Here's our annual rundown of a bunch of seasonal ice cream stands, with opening dates. In some cases the dates are TBA, or we just couldn't find out (yet). So if you can fill in some of the information in the comments, we'd very much appreciate it.

Because ice cream.

(there's more)

Today's moment of spring

white and yellow daffodil

The English word "daffodil" probably comes from the Dutch de affodil (which itself comes from a word for another type of flower).

But the (or a) German word for daffodil might be more fun: Osterglocken -- "Easter bells."

Today's moment of spring

garlic shoot spring garden

One of the things we've come to appreciate about gardening is the way it prompts us to be optimistic. You do all this work in the hope that -- eventually -- something good will happen.

It's especially true of garlic. The cloves are pressed into the soil in late October on the promise that they'll endure through the winter and come up on the other side. It's like an expression of hope that across the wide, snowy expanse we'll once again find a place that's warm and green.

And now we're there.

Ice cream stand season 2014

Thumbnail image for snowman ice cream sign troy

Now open: The Snowman.

Updated March 25

Public service announcement: Ice cream stand season has started.

The Snowman in Troy opened today. Bumpy's in Schenectady opened yesterday. And a few other season stands will be opening over the next week or so.

Here's a round up of a bunch of season ice cream stands, with opening dates. In some cases the dates are TBA, or we just couldn't find out (yet). So if you can fill in some of the information in the comments, we'd very much appreciate it. Because ice cream.

Who wants sprinkles...

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Today's moment of spring

wilted tulips south main ave 2013-05-15

South Main Ave in Albany.

The tulips have to wilt eventually. But even then, still oddly beautiful.

Today's moment of spring

By the way: the rain seems to have knocked some of the tree pollen out of the air.

Today's moment of spring

spring 2013 lilacs small

You can smell them better up close.

Eyes closed. The sun on your face. Deep breath. Lilacs.

Today's moment of spring

magnolia 2013 May

Up close.

A block off Western Ave in Albany, 6:30 pm.

Today's moment of spring

white flowering tree New Scotland Ave 2013-04-24 small

Or, if you prefer, in large format.

Albany, New Scotland Ave, 1:35 pm.

Today's moment of spring

buckingham pond fountain return rowboat

The fountains are back in Albany's Buckingham Pond.

On most days, we're pretty happy our job doesn't involve a row boat. Today... it might not have been so bad.

Proof that the peanut butter egg is better than the peanut butter cup

peanut butter cup vs peanut butter egg

Friday morning on AOA's Facebook page we blithely asserted that the Reese's peanut butter egg is vastly superior to the peanut butter cup. And while there were some who agreed with us, we did later in the day realize the error of our ways.

We didn't have data to support our claim.

So, because it's Friday afternoon, here is definitive proof that the peanut butter egg is better than the peanut butter cup.

(there's more)

Today's moment of spring

peony rain drops

Even more up close, if you like.

The peonies had been so patient.

And then, on their first day out, it rains.

Washington Park tulips are early -- and beautiful

Bloom.

The tulips in Albany's Washington Park are at their peak. Officially. The city actually sent out a press release today to make sure the word got around because the flowers are so early this year.

That's a little funny, but it speaks to how much tulips are part of Albany's identity. And people would be disappointed if they missed out.

We stopped by the park today to check out the blooms. We ran into Jessica Morgan, Albany's new city gardener. She got dealt tough hand in her first year.

"It's terrible luck!" she said to us, laughing, as we watched people admire the beds of flowers.

(there's more)

Today's moment of spring

backlit yellow red striped tulips

From the median on South Main Ave in Albany.

(This is to make up for the creepy bug pic earlier.)

An empty lot full of wishes

dandelion seeds in a field

The word dandelion comes from the French "dent de lion" -- lion's tooth. Modern French has a rather different name for the weeds, though.

As it happens, all this rain has polled very well in the dandelion community.

Today's moment of spring

dark purple iris

Random iris fact: they grow from rhizomes.

Thursday's forecast: 74, sunny, and delightful. Friday looks sunny, too.

Soak it up -- the outlook for the weekend and the beginning of next week: cloudy, cool and rainy.

20 facts about tulips

Tulips

Worth their own mania?

They're all over the Capital Region. We even have a festival for them (you may have heard).

So, here are 20 facts about tulips.

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Hello, spring

magnolias 2011 April

Calendars and official dates aside, we don't really consider spring to have officially begun until the magnolias bloom. Yesterday, the pink buds sat expectantly on the branches, still wrapped.

Today: hello spring.

Today's moment of spring

purple crocus macro

The word crocus is from Greek (krokos), and has origins back to a Sanskrit word meaning "saffron yellow." Yep, the name refers not to the petals, but the stamen. (That was today's moment of word nerdery.)

The NWS station at ALB recorded a high temp Monday of 82 at 6 pm. If that holds up as the official high for the day, it will tie the record for the date (previously set in 1945).

By the way: Wednesday's forecasted high temp is... 51 (and rainy).

What are those stinky trees?

pear tree blossoms

Pretty. Stinky.

By Ryan Palumbo

I was recently reduced to a position not unlike one commonly assumed by a heaving cat while on my way up from University Heights to B'yond Style for my monthly haircut, as I passed by a row of trees sporting what anybody would surely consider to be a beautiful arrangement of white flowers from each branch. Curious.

The next day, while riding the #10 CDTA bus, I smelled it yet again. Unsurprisingly, those trees were around. At that I concluded that the miasma that had been violating my olfactory system for nearly a week had to be radiating from these trees.

I am sure many, if not all of you, have seen these trees as the warm weather gives way to the blooming of flowers and leaves, and have no doubt noticed that they STINK. And not only do they just stink: they seem to give off what some have called a particular, familiar odor ("fish that's been sitting out way too long" is another description).

Thus my research into these odorous organisms began.

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Hot, hot, hot

single crocusThis past Friday's high temp of 77 was a record, according to the National Weather Service. The previous high was 69, set in 1967. The daily normal for that day is 51. (Saturday's 77 missed the record by two degrees.)

Wednesday's forecasted high temp is 81 -- hot, but it would still be short of the record. It was 87 on April 7 in 1991.

Relaxing on a spring day

swyer statue flower

Taking time to take it all in.

Bob -- of Nipper's Hot Dogs fame -- spotted this spring moment today.

The statue is of Lewis Swyer and it sits in Academy Park in Albany (here's another pic). Swyer was a developer (he developed Stuyvesant Plaza) and philanthropist (he sat on the boards of many non-profits, including SPAC).

Hello, sunshine!

first crocus

The first crocus we spotted this year.

It was a good day to wake up from a long winter's nap.

We hit 62 today. The forecast for rest of this week:

Thursday: 61 and sunny

Friday: 66 and sunny

Saturday: 67 and sunny

Sunday: 61 and chance of rain

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