We'll start this post off with a quick video of the famous Alaskan mosquito. Yes, some mosquitoes here are so large that you can see them in a video.
Most people think it is cold here all the time. I'm here to tell you I've seen 100 degrees here in the Interior, and though no one has wanted an air conditioner much before about the year 2000, they sell out in stores nowadays.
Our Break Up was slow and steady, with no black ice, no thunderstorms, nothing disastrous at all. Then it started getting really warm, almost 90 a couple times and it's still up there. If I leave a thermometer in the sun it hits 100 on my south-facing balcony.
All this warmth doesn't mean the ground thawed more than a couple inches as of about mid-May, but Alaskans are gardening fools, and we just can't wait to get some plants going! June 1 is the magic date for setting plants in the soil: after that time there *should* be no more night freezes. But I know folks that are taking there chances and have had plants out for two weeks now. It's such a short growing season (Fall starts in August) that all of us are just itching to get those fresh tomatoes on the vine!
Because of the heat, everything is happening early this year. The dogs and I scared a bunch of dragonflies out of the grass yesterday evening! Those don't usually come around until late June! I saw lilacs blooming yesterday, and our lilacs don't bloom until June, either.
The wild roses are blooming a month early, too. The fireweed in my yard is almost waist high already! Alaskans quietly sob when the fireweed blooms because it generally means that summer is coming to an end soon. I suspect we are going to have fireweed blooming very soon, but it isn't even Solstice yet!
The mosquitoes aren't too bad yet. There are still some big, dumb ones around but the little, nasty, predatory ones are out, too. Not enough to make me wear a head net, but enough that I have a new "fragrance" I'm wearing this summer called REPEL Lemon-Eucalyptus. It's non-DEET and works just as well. Plus it doesn't melt plastic the way DEET does.
I will get some tomato plants to put in containers on my hot, hot balcony, and maybe some cilantro, too. Summer is a time to relish fresh vegetables and fruits, since we never get truly fresh stuff at the stores. You can go to the Farmer's Market, but there won't be veggies there for a while. They are still growing.
Just about three weeks ago I had my yard totally raked and there was nothing but dirt and some old grass. In three weeks, it now looks like this. (Fifty pound husky there for size reference and cuteness.)
And this means I will wait until the grass dries out from the recent rains, and break out the weed whacker. Oh boy, summer is definitely here!