Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Opening of the Sedum

This year my father-in law put up several mason bee houses in his back yard and did they ever do a great job pollinating the crab apple tree! He showed me that up inside the tree bunches of apples hanging down. I counted ten in one bunch. I've never seen a tree so loaded down with so much of the rosy fruit.

Right now these apples are quite tart. My mother-in-law makes a fantastic crab apple sauce every year that we have at Thanksgiving.

And now as the nights grow cooler and longer, the last flowers of summer begin to bloom. A tiny bee rests on the petal of a brown-eyed Susan.

I read once that bees see flowers like bright stars against a night sky.

These sedum are not open yet, but they seem to drive the bees a bit mad. Honey bees search frantically for one open floret and even knock competitors out of the way like a pollinator's roller-derby contestant. Bumble bees too must smell something out of range of the human's olfactory senses. What else do they sense that still remains beyond our capacity to measure, study, and wax poetic about? As I feel the anxiety of the expectations of fall and the loss of summer in my heart I project those feelings onto the bees. So much to do before we lose the sun. So many crab apples to pick and cut and put into jars. Protest letters to write to conservative politicians. (Did you know that farmers in Alberta are going to grow GM sugar beets?!) That sort of thing. It feels overwhelming, but there will be inspired days in the winter too, and jars of spicy crab apple sauce.

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