The Resilience of Nature - October Lilac Blossoms in North-East

Photo taken by JLTaft

A few days ago I received this photo from a friend. The blossoms on one section of this plant had opened beautifully in mid October. As you can see from the background trees, the colorful autumn foliage was well underway and yet this spring blooming shrub was putting forth lovely sweet smelling flowers. A happy surprise!

Especially since early this spring, the gardener had lamented that her favorite Lilac Bush had been damaged when her husband had used carburetor cleaner (of all things) to dispense of an especially pesky bee colony. The chemical spray had apparently killed the bees and part of the Lilac as well. The affected leaves were dying off, and even the branches looked unhealthy. She was sure that at least that whole portion of the plant would eventually need to be pruned away.

But she babied it, and decided to wait and see how it fared. Gradually the original leaves seemed to perk up, though still not healthy appearing, they did still have some life. Suddenly late in the year, new growth began to appear at the ends of the limbs where the leaves had completely died off. Soon the blossoms made a miraculous showing. I wonder if, in an effort to extend the unseasonal bouquet, she covered the flowers during the two subsequent frosts that we had soon after? Knowing Jan, I can bet she did! 

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