Here is evidence of the daffodils:
And some fungus under the forsythia:
Otherwise, the yard is still very dormant today. I dug around in the big compost piles, sifting some and turning most of the rest. What compost I did manage to glean went into the new raised beds.
I'm on the fence re square foot gardening "by the book". One is supposed to mix one's own potting soil, using peat moss, blended compost, and vermiculite. Finding vermiculite in anything other than small bags is difficult, and it is surprisingly expensive. I found some online at a better price, the the shipping was more than the vermiculite cost. Vermiculite is sometimes used as insulation (Menards carries it), but it is not clear to me if that is suitable for horticultural use. And then the amount of homemade potting soil needed to fill even one bed is a bit daunting to my pocketbook.
And yet, my soil is heavy clay, I have a major weed problem, and it would be wonderful to garden with something light and fluffy and at least initially weedfree, so the one-time expense seems worth it. I have a feeling I will probably mix square foot gardening with lasagna gardening, layering in newspaper, leaves, manure, etc. and topping it all with the special mix. Or I will make one or more batches but limit its use to the grow sacks, which at the end of the season can be dumped into the raised beds. Or...?