Ahhhh, I'm sitting in the cool of the house with a tall glass of iced-down lemon water and feeling lots more refreshed after some time in the yard. I got my mowing done in the morning and set to pruning this afternoon. I pruned my lilac bushes by trimming off the stem that was once a gorgeous blossom and has now gone to seed. If you don't trim this seed head off, it will not flower on that branch again. You see how it grows in between the fork of the leaves? I wish there was something I could make with the seeds of lilac bushes. Lilac jam or jelly?
The picture below shows a new little bud beginning to form already. This will be where a lilac blossom will come next spring. I circled it in red. I can't help but thinking of the lessons that Jesus taught about pruning when I'm doing a job like this.
I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it, that it may bear more fruit. ~John 15
Where is he pruning me? Or is he removing something altogether that is unproductive?
I also spent some time pruning the caragana bushes that grow in my backyard near the clothesline. Little did I know seventeen years ago that those little sticks we planted would turn into bushy shrubs that poke out towards my clothesline and cause towels to fray and trousers to snag. I try to only hang "short things" on that inside line now so they don't get caught in the prickly bushes. I've pruned them back quite a bit today, but they're sure to grow out there again. Picking up all the twigs is important to me because I go to the clothesline barefoot often. Do you? How many of you use a clothesline regularly? I love mine and consider it nearly immoral if I don't use it on a hot summer day and choose to use the dryer instead. What a waste of warm sunshine and a nice breeze.
Now that that job is done, it's time to hang out the blue jeans!
A wee bit of Lilac History:
Lilacs in the United States date back to the mid 1750's. They were grown in America's first botanical gardens and were popular in New England. Both George Washington and Thomas Jefferson grew them in their gardens. Lilac bushes can live for hundreds of years, so a bush planted at that time may still be around. Lilacs originated from Europe and Asia, with the majority of natural varieties coming from Asia. In Europe, lilacs came from the Balkans, France and Turkey.