Overnight, one backyard peony has burst into full flower, hurried by yesterday’s suddenly summery heat. The neighborhood mountain laurels are also blooming, which always strikes me as incongruous, as I invariably associate laurels with cool summer mountaintops, not simmering summer hothouses.

Mountain laurel

I said the exact same thing about sudden summers, peonies, and mountain laurels last year, with similar illustrations…except this year, both our backyard peonies and the neighborhood mountain laurels have bloomed more than a week ahead of schedule. Summer has arrived just as suddenly this year as it did last, but this year it has arrived suddenly, sooner.

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