It was a hot and humid day. The honeysuckle perfumed the muggy air with its seductive fragrance. I ventured out, dressed from head to toe (for sun and tick protection), to harvest honeysuckle blooms, many of which seemed to be intertwined with brambles. Soon, my nitrile gloves were ripped to shreds – but, sometimes, sacrifices must be made in the pursuit of the land’s wild bounty.Continue reading “Winecraft: Heavenly Honeysuckle…And Blotto Bees”
We’re surrounded by the incredible beauty – arguably, mundane beauty – of wildflowers. Some belong to what we call “weeds” (undeservedly pejorative), but each has its charm, value, and/or use. While I truly do appreciate their aesthetic appeal, I also appreciate the range of wines that can be made from the edible flowers: some delicate, some bold, and all unique.Continue reading “Winecraft: Working Wildflowers”
It’s been a banner year for the elderflowers (sadly, the same can’t be said for some other flowers and plants, like the day lilies that fizzled out early, probably due to the dry conditions), and visions of a bumper crop of elderberries – and elderberry syrup and wine – dance in my head. If those visions become reality, I have pollinators like this tiny bee to thank. And I wholeheartedly do thank them!
I’m always happy to see our pollinator friends, but am particularly grateful now for the perspective they provide. When I’m mired in the seemingly inescapable “deep thoughts”, these hard-working creatures remind me that it’s important to focus on both the philosophical and the quotidian. Be well.
As the weather’s grown cooler here, I wonder how long the butterflies and bees will be around. Few flowers still remain, mostly what people would consider to be “weeds”, like thistle and a low-growing bush with miniscule white flowers. Pesky to some, these are important food sources for pollinators.
What will the world be like
When there are no more bees, trees, or frogs?
When scorched earth is our reality
And we breathe in choking smog?
We continue to generate scads of plastic waste
Build mansions of questionable taste
Kill off species at a unimaginable pace –
Are we proud we’ve trashed this place?
What awaits our children now?
Are clear blue skies and lakes unicorns?
Are we considering the future for mankind
As even more of us are born?
I asked you to recycle your plastic
And put your cardboard in the nearby bin
You laughed at me for having asked it,
And I knew, sadly, that I would not win.
There just aren’t enough who care
Plenty who talk the talk but won’t walk the walk
And plenty who are aware
And deluding themselves about this epoch:
Glaciers melting, record heat,
Dirty air, algal blooms, CAFO meat,
Tech “reality,”, rainforest burning…
But the world keeps turning.
For those who refuse to accept
What’s in front of their faces
Soon, differences won’t matter,
Like political affiliations, religions, races…
We’ll be struggling to survive
On the world we’ve taken for granted
And abused, neglected, and plundered
And we’ll reap the terrible harvest we’ve planted –
Because not enough of us care, you see,
About anything other than “me”,
Even though the world must operate as “we”…
And so much depends on the flight of the bee.