By Phran Novelli

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Oh what does the groundhog know, anyway? Whether you’re hoping spring hurries up, or wishing that winter hangs on, there are always signs of spring this time of year if you stop to look.

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Of course you see the occasional bloom breaking prematurely during a warm stretch – like the single forsythia flower I saw on otherwise bare branches a few weeks ago, like a soloist rushing on stage waaaaay to early to belt out a tune. Oooops! It’s cute, but clearly premature.

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Warm spells can trick buds on trees and shrubs to get going. I recently noticed a weeping willow looking a lot more yellow than it did in December – its buds getting a golden hue as they march toward spring when their yellow flowers will unfurl. But usually, the cold hits again and the plants remember – oh, right it’s still winter. Or like last year maybe not.

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Depending on how dependable that groundhog is…or isn’t – history shows he’s right less than 40 percent of the time.