Yes, Ligustrum Joy
Yes, dear friends, I actually adore the scent of ligustrum. I know, I know, so many people, well, just about everyone I meet, hates it. Even my husband dislikes it, poor man. One Alabama master gardener said, “Most of us don’t want it to get started in our yards.” I thought: “Well.” More on my love for ligustrum at the end, should you care to go that far.
First my grandmother’s rose– Second year of being transplanted from Oklahoma. When dug from the ground, it broke into three plants. Good Lord, they had so little roots! Look at them now!
We have two banana shrubs. I call them trees. They exude a heady fragrance that can bowl you over if you are too close to them, but which is seductive when wafting through the yard.
Below is a yellow-orange rhododendron. I’m grateful to someone on Twitter for giving me the name. What a delightful fragrance!
And now, ta-da– ligustrum has come in bloom!
Ligustrum is a great gift in my life. I adore the waxy leaves of the cultivated shrub–also a tree, imho and experience. The wild variety has pretty, delicate leaves. And the scent is for me like some sort of feel-good drug, kindling great joy inside. I think I may associate it with happy times of walking around my grandmother’s neighborhood in Elizabeth City, North Carolina. I just feel so darn happy when I smell ligustrum.
No one knew how much I loved ligustrum. My husband knew I liked it, and he planted two hedges of it for me out in Oklahoma, on the plain, no less. I thought I was leaving those hedges behind. We had bought our Alabama house in the winter, and I really did not know what large ligustrum looked like; I only knew the plant by it’s fragrance.
At midnight on May 3, 2009, we pulled into the moonlit driveway of our new Alabama home. We stepped out of our trucks and were hit by perfectly still humid summer air heavy with a familiar sultry scent. I was flabbergasted. I kept saying, “Ohmygosh, ligustrum! ohmygosh!”
The next morning at dawn, I ventured barefoot into the back yard and discovered that all the thick tall shrubs lining our back yard and providing the wonderful privacy were ligustrum!
The only one who knew how much the ligustrum meant to me was God. It was a very special gift, signifying this place as just for me.
Thanks to Carol of May Dreams Gardens, who so generously hosts Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day the 15th of each month. Visit her site and see the many other participants and their wonderful photos.
ps: I met another woman yesterday who loves the scent of ligustrum! She does the same as I, steps outside and inhales deeply, with an, “Ahhh.”