Saturday, August 11, 2007

Butterflies Sail Above Plumbago



Now, as the summer air grows warmer and small regattas of butterflies silently tack among invisible swells in the air, I am glad that I hold back the temptation to over-use chemicals in my garden. The plumbago is a bully of a neighbor. It does not respect its neighbor plants’ right to also flourish. Yet earlier this year I did not unmercifully wield a machete at unwanted volunteer shoots of plumbago and then hit the stubs with Roundup. I did not spray all the caterpillars on their march up tender flowering spring branches. I am so happy I didn’t. The evidence that the caterpillars growing fat on the bounty of my plants tender spring shoots pales in importance compared to the beauty before me now.
Floating through the air are diminutive fleets of butterflies. On their miniature sails, they proudly display the colors of their species: the orange of the monarch, the bold yellow and black stripes of the swallowtail, and the lemon yellow of the sulfa. This miniature regatta floats leisurely by, holding its position above the abundant blue froth of flowers, waiting for me to back away. When I do, the butterflies navigate slowly downward, to gently dock and silently sip the sweet nectar within. Refueled, they will drift away, ghost ships leaving no tangible evidence to prove the magic of the moment. It is a lesson from the garden, that not having evidence doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.

2 comments:

Sue said...

You write in prose. Your words flow and ebb and paint a picture I envison in my mind. Your education and writing ability are evident. I loved the butterfly scenario. My friend Trish Bowler shared your blog with me. I thoroughly enjoyed it. My best to you.
Sue Maxwell
www.susan-maxwell.com

Anonymous said...

Lydia,
I have just discovered how to post on here. I love your writings and have sent it to my Oregon friend,
I could almost smell the aromas you spoke of at your party!
Keep up the great work!
XOXO Trisha