“winter is past.” In this context, it seems that the “winter” refers to the whole rainy season, including both the former (fall) and latter (spring) rains. If that is the case, then the rains are over for the year and the earth will begin to heat up in earnest, but it is not unreasonably hot yet, late spring is upon them, it would be about mid to late April. On the other hand, it may be that he is referring to the cold rains of winter before the latter rain in March and April, when the air is heating up and the flowers are appearing. If that is the case, there would still be rain expected through April, but it would not be the cold rain of winter. [For more on the former and latter rainy seasons, see commentary on James 5:7].