The recording and study of the timing of natural events, such as when trees bloom, is called phenology. For the past 17 years I have kept track of when a certain species of crab apple have bloomed in south Fargo. This spring was quite cold until very late April, but even so the trees I keep track of fully bloomed on May 16. This is well before the springs of 2002 and 2008 when the trees didn’t bloom until May 27. The earliest these trees have bloomed was on May 7, 2005. So this year fell into the middle of those two extremes, or put another way, right near the average for the past 17 years. Phenology tools helped our ancestors determine when to plant in the past.