When I was growing up in Pennsylvania, it was about this time of year that I remember reading reports from the tournaments that had already kicked off in Florida. They’d talk about tactics like fishing lily pad stems, punching heavy mats, and running bladed swim jigs over early spring vegetation. You’d hear all this hype about how fish are caught in Florida with this new tactics, and I always thought, “Too bad these tricks don’t apply in the cold Northeast.” It wasn’t until I started traveling the country and competing myself that I learned these Florida-born techniques work pretty much everywhere bass swim. The thing about Florida is that it has a virtually endless supply of aquatic veggie options, so an angler is forced to decipher the more finite differences between them in order to be successful at different times of year. That, however, doesn’t mean this deciphering skill isn’t useful in the Carolinas, or even up into Canada.