A Gardener’s Equinox and Equilux

Forget March 20th, today is my spring, or vernal, equinox. More accurately it’s my vernal “equilux”. On the equilux, day equals night, sunrise and sunset are exactly 12 hours apart. Technically the equinox is the point in time when the sun is directly above the equator. It’s commonly associated with the solstice and we recognize the day as the beginning of spring; on the calendar that will be March 20. Specific equiluxes around the world vary from that day depending on latitude.

Daffodils and tulips will be here soon

While many gardeners look forward to the equinox or solstice or beginning of spring as a transition day, to me the equilux is more exciting.  This is the day I’ve been looking for as I note the sunrise and sunset times in the local paper. I don’t have to wait four more days to celebrate the season. Starting tomorrow the sun stays up longer each day. The soil will warm, the buds will break, green will pop forth throughout the landscape. Spring is definitely in the air.

Life has begun and will continue to explode around me. It’s a tad ironic that the day began with a woodpecker tap-tapping on the outside wall above our headboard.

The thought that for the next six months I’ll have more time to enjoy the sun is warming. I love gardening throughout the year, but I tend to like it more when I don’t have to put a coat on. A hot sun and warm soil work well together. Symbolically, today is when it begins to happen for me.

There will be more time for gardening each day. More time to get my fingers dirty. More time to sow, plant, water, weed, prune, and harvest. More time to do what I love to do.

Mentally a threshold has been crossed. The chains of winter have been broken. My equilux is today and my growing season begins. Warm and productive days await. It helps that we’re expected to set a record high temperature this afternoon.

I’m headed outside to do some of the garden clean up that seemed like a chore when the skies were grey and the wind was chilled. Now the same task seems more like easy preparation for the seeds and transplants that will follow soon.

I’m enthusiastic. There is so much to do and already there doesn’t seem to be enough time to get everything done. But I’m more than willing to make it all happen and enjoy myself in the process. What a difference a day makes.

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