Blossom, Punxsutawney Phil and persimmon prognostication

A lot of America appears to be suffering from winter fatigue, cabin fever or related disorders that result from a prolonged battle against cold, snow, snirt, ice, power outages and indignant derriere landings thanks to any number of slick frozen water combinations.

This headline from a CBS story today says it all: The calendar may say spring, but the forecast says snow.

The winter weariness seems to have reached serious proportions in Butler County, Ohio, where there’s an indictment with Punxsutawney Phil’s name on it:

3-24-Indictment
Where’s Perry Mason when you need him?

When it comes to whistlepig prognosticators, our money is on Perry County Blossom, who this year predicted six more weeks of winter. Blossom spokescouple Jack and Tamara also report that Blossom has had a litter.  We hope to have a new photo or two of Blossom as spring progresses and she can leave her den.

And one more note about folkways forecasting. It seems the persimmon seeds were right this year. The wet winter has been welcome in the half of Arkansas still in drought.

Persimmon predictions

Long before computer models for forecasting the winter ahead, there were simpler, folksier tools: persimmon seeds, woolly bear caterpillars and squirrels.  READ MORE … 

PERSIMMON PREDICTION — Folk wisdom says the shape that appears inside a persimmon seed will be an indicator of the winter to come.  A spoon shape (top) means a wet winter. A fork (middle)  means light powdery snow. A knife (bottom) can mean icy, cutting winds or splitting the difference between the spoon and fork predictions, depending on what you believe.  The verdict of these seeds, opened Nov. 15, 2012,  is divided. However,a consensus of cut seed reports from other parts of Arkansas seem to be leaning toward a wet winter.  (U of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture photo)