I only recently learned the name of this bush, which Sandia hairstreaks and other insects love. I’ve watched it for many years though and was really alarmed this past March when it didn’t bud at the usual time. There were also many fewer Sandia hairstreaks than usual, and I don’t know whether the two incidents were connected, or whether they stemmed from the same circumstances (it was awfully dry last winter), or … who knows what. Nonetheless, I was alarmed to see them budding yesterday, on the winter solstice. It wasn’t just one bush either; there were numerous bushes that were budding all over my part of the foothills.
The buds are very, very tiny so I don’t know if perhaps they budded prematurely last year as well and I just didn’t notice or, for that matter, if they bud in the winter every year. I plan to keep an eye on them from here on out though.