I feel like a broken record. For years we remarked about the January thaw. Now it just does not happen, since we have yet to have the ground freeze. There is a crust some mornings but rarely does it remain for the day.

Oddly, though, the spring bulbs seem to think they already experienced winter. I have them poking up everywhere. Both snowdrops and crocuses are up an inch or so. I spent a morning with the help of Violet cleaning my greenhouse. I found several half-bags of Bulbtone and Hollytone. Wonder what I think when I keep buying more? At any rate, I tossed all of it around the property. I put Hollytone generously around all the evergreens, dogwoods, azaleas and hydrangeas. Also, emptied every bit of the Bulbtone everywhere there may possibly be a bulb or iris. It’s handy to have the Covid mask in a jacket pocket to prevent breathing in the dusty fertilizers.

I ran into Hilary Bloxum in SBS recently. After some commiserating about the state of our world, she brightened the day with news of her blooming white hellebores.

I have two questions of the reading public this week. What exactly is the lichen covering the now-bare trees? Every one of the young fruit trees at the lower end of North Road at the old Humphrey property is covered with it. I think, while unattractive, it is harmless since the trees seem to thrive in summer. Also, why do the trees from the Five Corners down to Net Result have jackets of wood and burlap? We’ve been speculating but are basically clueless.

I set up the propagating mats at 60 degrees in the unheated greenhouse. I planted some field peas for salad shoots. They germinated in three days. Two columns ago I mentioned planting some older seeds in the unheated hoop house. Here it is two weeks later and they have all germinated. This is in the ground under a single layer of 6 mil plastic. Nature is grand. All five rows — bok choy, radishes, spinach, lettuce and blue-leafed kale — are up and running.

Also I found a couple of garlic bulbs in the seed basket that I neglected to plant last October. I divided them into cloves and planted in a seed tray for the heck of it. They sent up little shoots overnight. Color me pleasantly surprised. I am planning to use the green tops as scallions.

I’m looking forward to the Covid vaccine. Enough is enough of this plague.

When I was a child the only vaccination we got was for smallpox. (I was a polio pioneer in the second grade.) We got the shot in our upper arm at about five years old. We were warned not to pick the ugly scab. It was a difficult warning to heed.

My mother was also vaccinated as a young girl. The barn rooster chased her down and pecked her scab. To her dying day she carried around a golf-ball-sized scar from that event. She showed all of us newly vaccinated in town. None of us picked our scabs after seeing that.

I’m forcing myself to stay up past my bedtime to watch the election results from the Georgia Senate runoffs. What a week we are bound to have. Wednesday’s vote in Congress looks like it could develop into a real news story.

Aside from months of Covid anxiety, the continual exhaustion of the Donald Trump presidency is beginning to really take its toll. I, for one, cannot wait for “Sleepy Joe” to grab the reins. I need a rest.