This is Robert Frost speaking to his young New Hampshire orchard in one of his poems.
"Fear fifty above more than fifty below" he tells his fruit trees,, for he knows how cruel early warm spells can be. Unwary blossoms meet one 20 degree night and the peaches and pears and apples are lost for that year.
I thought of this poem as I drove home this morning from work. It is February 28th and 70 degrees. No good will come of this. My rose bush, my hydrangea are sprouting leaves and greening up. The warmth will tempt our saucer magnolias and redbuds, our azaleas. Blackberries too. And as I type this, rain reminiscent of last May's floods is beating the cars and running down the hills to the Harpeth River. Cold and warm fight here. Just ask the tornado sirens-
We are still six weeks from our last expected frost date. And my potted blue hydrangea will hold me hostage. Who knows how many nights I will have to drag it and its fifty pound pot inside. The peach farmers will not be so lucky.
"No orchard's the worse for the wintriest storm" wrote Frost, whose New Hampshire weather was more trustworthy than the weather in Tennessee.