Natural Attraction . . .

“I am thinking of the lilac-trees,
That shook their purple plumes,
And when the sash was open,
Shed fragrance through the room.”
~ Mrs. Anna S. Stephens, The Old Apple-Tree

The intoxicating fragrance hit my nose as soon as I opened my car door. The familiar scent signals to me that spring really is here. I am not quite sure why the smell of lilacs blooming in the spring is special to me, their beautiful blooms are so short-lived and too many brought into the house can ruin your love of their scent … but, they are an aspect of home.

The lilac bushes at my parent’s house turn into a hubbub of critter commotion when at full bloom. Yesterday, the bushes were filled with butterflies, bees of all kinds, dragonflies, a weird little moth/hummingbird bug, goldfinches, and a pair of hummingbirds that were trying to chase all the other critters away (they usually nest in the bush). The bush was buzzing with life.

Life has been rather heavy for me (parents are ill), but standing there amid the fragrance and all of these free flying photo opportunities I was able to lighten my stress for about 30 minutes or more. To my amazement, the hundreds of pictures I thought I had taken amounted to about a dozen. Obviously, I disappeared into that moment and spent more time breathing in the fresh smells and enjoying the show provided by nature’s attraction to that lilac bush. I love when your mind decides to take care of you without you knowing about it.

Two summers ago, I tried planting some lilac bushes here in the woods to bring a piece of home to my spring and to attract some of those fun critters. They did not survive the winter. Yesterday’s lilac moment tells me that I definitely need to give it another try.
“If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change.” ~ Buddha

Being attracted to nature and bringing nature into our lives seems to be a universal need. Think about it. There are very few buildings, apartments or houses in the world that are not home to at least one plant, one pet, or one vase of flowers. Most of us work to find ways to attract pleasant aspects of nature to our yards and homes. For instance, bird feeders to attract the birds (and those darn squirrels). I plant flowers I know the bees and hummingbirds enjoy and that I will enjoy bringing into my home. And, simple things like keeping areas of grass in my yard cut short because I know the robins like to bop around to find food.

There is a critical balance that needs to be kept, however. I also need to do things to make destructive critters unwelcome or at the very least protect things that they might destroy. I plant stinky flowers (marigolds and geraniums) with my favorite flowers so that they do not get eaten by the deer or the woodchuck. I put a fence around my tomato plants for the same reason. I keep the brush cut back to give me a small space away from the insect world. And, my bird feeders come in at night so that the raccoons and bears do not decide to play soccer with them.

What do you do to “attract” nature to your yard?
What aspects of nature do you bring into your home?
What do you do to make your yard unattractive to unwanted nature?

~ by bearyweather on June 9, 2011.

13 Responses to “Natural Attraction . . .”

  1. Some really really great shots here. What a variety. Regarding your question about the Skipper, it looks similar to our UK ones. I’m not all that clued up on US critters but definately looks part of the same family.

    • Thanks. After visiting your beautiful blog and seeing that picture of a skipper, I did some more research. I think what I have is a “Hummingbird Moth” .. it flew like a hummingbird, only much much smaller.

  2. I LOVE lilacs. Had a bush growing up, don’t have one now but my neighbor does. Lilacs here have bloomed and died…thank you for bringing the spring back. We have already slipped into the intense heat of the summer season.

  3. I love the butterflies. Thanks for sharing

  4. We love lilacs too. We have five bushes of them and two of those are huge and contain hummingbird homes every summer. I still have fond memories of the lilacs at my parents’ home when I was a child.

    • Seems lilacs have a long history of familiar warm thoughts associated with them. It is amazing how this old european plant has become an American favorite, too.

  5. These are beautiful shots, Bearyweather. I’m sorry to hear about your parents being ill, but so glad nature was able to soothe you for a little while.

    Lilacs remind me of spring and childhood, too. My mother had an amazing lilac bush, almost more like a tree. The critters swarmed around it in the spring, just as with your lilac at your parents’. I was one of those critters who liked to crawl inside, but I would just pretend it was my home, perfumed with that wonderful scent.

    I tried planting them here and although they do bloom, they haven’t grown very much. I think they might be like the rhododendrons and azaleas. They need years of care before they really grow and bloom. One of my brothers bought my parents’ home when they decided to move out. His wife cut down the old lilac bush. I couldn’t believe someone would do that, the bush having been there for more than 40 years and still thriving. Ah well. At least she didn’t have the old oak tree cut down. Yet.

    • The plant in my parent’s yard is huge … 10-12 feet high and that wide. It is a very old plant, it was on the property when my parents bought it 45 years ago. I would like to see if I can dig up some of the new growth this summer … maybe that will be more successful than the ones I planted a few years ago. I am sorry that your sister-in-law does not have an appreciation for these wonderful plants.

  6. Hi Bearyweather, I too love Lilacs. I am fortunate that my next door neighbor has a larger Lilac planted just at my driveway. Love the fragrance! The critters you have photographed are simply great! Have a super nice day today and enjoy the lilacs you see!

  7. What pleasant pictures! Lilacs are a big hit with the insects I see 🙂

    I wonder if the hummingbird-looking chap is a sphinx moth?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: