Spring: When Turkeys Fly & Frogs Chirp

Spring has arrived on the farm, and with it has come all the beauty and wonder of the land coming alive.

by Rachael Dupree
PHOTO: Rachael Dupree

It’s that magical time of year on the farm when everything is waking up from its months-long slumber. The brown landscape is now turning lush and vibrant, and as I wait for my plant babies in the sunroom to mature and chip away at getting my garden plot into workable order, there’s still space to soak in the beauty that’s unfolding all around.

Rachael Dupree

The other day I took a solo walk around the farm to clear my head. Of all the things I’ve enjoyed about our new life at this place, the opportunities like this, to escape and unwind after a long day, are the most precious. Even though I’ve walked the same paths nearly a hundred times by this point, there’s always something new to explore. Now that spring has arrived, the number of somethings has become exponential.

Walking along the tree line in our back field, the sound of swooshing wings from a clumsy bird made me turn my head. We’ve had a number of turkey vultures circling the property lately. I thought it odd that they’d be making such audible flapping noises, though the acoustics of our surroundings tend to play tricks on your ears. Upon further investigation, I found out wasn’t a turkey vulture at all but a wild turkey. Even though we live in wild-turkey country—a distillery making spirits that bear the name sits just miles up the road—I’ve come into little contact with them during our time here. But here were about a dozen roosting up high in the trees, startled by my presence and making ungainly attempts to flee the scene.

As I made my way into the forest, I spotted spring ephemerals whose names I haven’t learned yet. I was halted in my tracks by the emerging song of chirping tree frogs, their music rising in volume as if someone was turning the stereo up as I stepped into this forest room. Coyotes chimed in with their howls to lend texture to this lovely melody, while bees buzzed around, adding percussion to the mix.

Rachael Dupree

I continued my journey, the forest hymn coming to a crescendo or decrescendo as I made my way through the trees. Often I heard the thumps of escaping dear hooves or caught flashes of their white tails as I mistakenly disturbed their tree-covered sanctuaries.

The trail leading back to home began to show spots of color: yellow and orange and white daffodils popping up in tufts along hillside slopes, pink tulips softly blossoming around the house, and the redbud trees bearing their first signs of color. Soon the season will pick up, and we’ll be caught up in mowing chores, tending our large garden, and prepping and preserving all the food that grows there. But for now, I’m basking in these last moments of rest and rejuvenation, taking in all that our land has to offer.

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