It’s the last Monday of the year, and the first after the solstice. The days are getting longer! Today was almost a minute and a half longer than yesterday. The sun will rise at 10:59 this morning and set at 2:44 this afternoon for 3 hrs 45 minutes of theoretical sunlight, and the sun will reach 2.1° above the horizon. The coldest part of the year is still before us, but at least we’re getting some light back. By this time next week, the days will be more than four hours long.

This morning about noon. Photo to right was yesterday.

We’ve had some snow over the last week, and the snowstake has finally come unstuck. It has some snow frozen on the near side which makes it difficult to read, but I think from the base of the triangle of stuck snow it read about 13” depth when it got too dark to see last night. We had snow (as well as fog) Christmas day, but only about a tenth of an inch was expected. From the way it was snowing around 6 pm, I suspect we got more than that. (8:30 am: we had more than a tenth of an inch, but it’s still too dark to tell how much more. Roads were very slippery and visibility terrible last night. 11:30: Left photo suggests we had about an inch last night.) Temperatures? Below zero even at the warmest, and around 20 to 30 below at night. We don’t really have much warming in daytime, though.

I think I see the first, faint beginnings of buds on the Christmas cactus, after only a little over two weeks of a twelve on-twelve off light cycle. And there is no question about the sunquat, a citrus hybrid. Hope its blossoms smell better than the worm tea I treated all the plants to yesterday!

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