Saturday's weather in the Stateline area was beyond gorgeous, and I think it's safe to say we are all feening for actual Spring now. Heck, I even took down all the snowman/snowflake decor in my home yesterday because I got so excited for Spring's official arrival.  Yes, I know that behavior was premature, but I couldn't help myself. (At least I didn't go all in putting up my Spring decor yet).

Saturday's gorgeous weather also inspired me to do the one Spring cleanup chore I hate the most; clean up the dog poopmageddon that accumulated in my yard under the snow. As I trudged through my grass cursing the fact that I love dogs so much I was quickly reminded that Illinois actually has several stages of 'false spring', and we have just entered the worst stage of it.

Is False Spring a Real Thing in Illinois?

For those that don't know, 'False Spring' is a real term used in the botany world. The term refers to the period of time in late winter/early spring when temperatures get warm enough to trick plants into awakening from dormancy. It's a bad thing for plants because early-blooming can make them more vulnerable to disease in the summer, and it's a bad tease for those of us that NEED warmer weather to come...and stay.

The 6 Stages of False Spring in Illinois

I think all of us in Illinois would agree that before real Spring actually arrives, we go through many stages. Some of those stages are pleasant, and some are downright nasty. Here are the six Spring stages I think Illinois goes through, what would you add to the list?

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
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1. The Ugly Phase- To me, false spring begins when the snow melts and we're left with ugly brown grass that has trash and road salt remnants all over it, and there's also LOTS of mud.

Photo by Brian Yurasits on Unsplash
Photo by Brian Yurasits on Unsplash
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2. The Dog Poop Minefield Phase - This phase is especially disgusting when you have young kids that really want to play outside before you have scooped and filled up multiple bags of soggy turds.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
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3. Spring of Deception - When we get a taste of warmer temps and see plants begin to sprout through the soil and get all excited that Spring has come to play a little earlier this year.

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4. Second Winter - When Mother Nature notices we're getting a little too excited about spending time outdoors again...BOOM, here comes the snow and frigid temperatures.

Melting icicle on a snow covered pine branch at winter forest.
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5. The Muddy Mess Phase - This is when we get through the last snowstorm of winter, everything melts again, and it immediately starts raining. It is literally impossible to keep anything clean and you feel like your whole world is covered in mud.

Photo by Yoksel 🌿 Zok on Unsplash
Photo by Yoksel 🌿 Zok on Unsplash
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6. Legit Spring - When the trees have budded, the tulips and daffodils have sprouted, and everything is coming alive with color again, we can finally rejoice that Spring is really here...but so is allergy season...and soon mosquitoes.

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40 Recommended Places for a Friday Night Fish Fry in Illinois

This list of recommended fish fry spots is long enough to go to a different place every week for almost an entire year.