Horsetail reeds, used for centuries as medicine, dye and tea, are already thriving on this section of a creek in northern Wisconsin.

Spring has spent the last few weeks trying to find its way out of winter. And just when it has, it’s running smack dab into summer on this gray day in May. The temperature is rising, and the air is serving up a July side of humidity.

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I’m taking a trail to the creek, nearly a mile away. There are notes of spring scattered here and there but not everywhere; without birdsong and frog calls, and a lack of green across the slow-budding woodland, spring is not bursting. It may be bubbling, but not bursting.

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