WHAT'S BLOOMING?: Spring on the Rio Grande Trail

Apricot blossoms on the Rio Grande Trail about to burst open!

Apricot blossoms on the Rio Grande Trail about to burst open!

Spring! What a wonderful time of year! And what a really hard time of year too. Here in Carbondale, Colorado it seems like it really takes it's time coming around and any sort of floral display (Look! The first dandelion!) or greenery is always a welcome sight as the winter begins to melt away into a sloppy mud season. Sometimes it's hard to know if spring is here to stay or if winter is just off for a few days. I always seem to be looking over my shoulder hesitantly as I start to plant outside, wondering if winter will barge right through the door and frost all of my tender plants just as they are starting to really look good! 

I decided to take a ride down the Rio Grande Trail to see what plants are ready to rise from their winter slumber and to observe what I could responsibly forage (MWFC has a foraging permit with the Roaring Fork Transit Authority [RFTA] to forage within the right of way of the Rio Grande Trail) for a spring bouquet. I was PLEASANTLY surprised at what I found.

APRICOT BLOSSOMS  A honey bee on its way to collect some sweet apricot nectar. 

APRICOT BLOSSOMS A honey bee on its way to collect some sweet apricot nectar. 

CLOVE CURRANT   Yellow blossoms the size of your pinky fingernail. Sweet scent. Pairs well in an arrangement with forsythia.

CLOVE CURRANT Yellow blossoms the size of your pinky fingernail. Sweet scent. Pairs well in an arrangement with forsythia.

CHOKE CHERRY FLOWER BUDS!   Beautiful rusted amber blushing with green foliage.

CHOKE CHERRY FLOWER BUDS! Beautiful rusted amber blushing with green foliage.

???   Can anyone tell us what this little beauty is? Very small flowers on a 4' shrub.

??? Can anyone tell us what this little beauty is? Very small flowers on a 4' shrub.

FORAGED ARRANGEMENT   Apricot blossoms, choke cherry buds and the mystery pink flower just in bud!

FORAGED ARRANGEMENT Apricot blossoms, choke cherry buds and the mystery pink flower just in bud!

What do you see in bloom right now?