Springtime in central Iowa


Ahhhh, springtime in central Iowa. Winter lasts forever, and once spring finally arrives, it lasts for about 5 minutes before we are into full-blown summer.

We had snow up until April 18 this year ­– not an errant gasp of winter in mid-April, but serious, hard-core winter weather throughout March and well into April. Here’s an example from my own backyard, the first photo taken on April 15, the second on May 6:



I’ve made it a practice for many years to travel to Pella the weekend before Tulip Time to see the flowers without the crowds. This year that plan backfired; one week before Tulip Time there were stubby green stems and leaves, but very few tulips nodding in the sunshine (see the one bed that was blooming, below). A week later, during the actual event, I’m told the flowers were in full bloom. What a difference a week makes!


I visited Reiman Gardens in Ames last weekend, and the tulips there were magnificent, just a riot of color. I loved the multicolored beds this year.



It was a warm, sunny, windy day – a perfect environment to view the Gardens’ Wind, Waves, and Light kinetic sculpture exhibition (below). The sculptures, created by George Sherwood, are made of highly reflective stainless steel, and they reflect the sunlight as well as moving in mesmerizing patterns in the wind. See it this summer or fall – it will be on display through Nov. 3.




Then, these little sweeties popped up in my front yard a couple of days ago. I love their little faces.


This week I visited McFarland Park (in Story County, just north of Ames) for the first time in more than a year. I used to hike there regularly; I’m not sure why I don’t drive up there more often. The park has some of the best spots for wildflower viewing in the area. This spring’s crop is the best I’ve ever seen. The bluebells are real little overachievers, blooming in incredible numbers all over the woodland floor. There are also wild violets and other yummy little flowers in a rainbow of colors.








Go soon! Spring is over in the blink of an eye.



1 comment so far

  1. Deb on

    Love your photos, nice story, fellow non-native Iowa girl

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