maybe, maybe not

Aw, thanks for all the ‘hellos’ on the last post!  Honestly, I wasn’t looking for blog affirmation… just thinking.  Evaluating.  Thinking, as I need to once a year or so, about why I write and should I keep going and how this whole virtual neighborhood affects my little life. Anything you spend more than an hour on per week deserves a little thought, yes?

This ‘neighborhood’ affects me greatly… without it, I would surely hole up on these 40 acres and paint bad paintings while letting dinner burn.  Over the years, you readers have become friends.  The numbers have remained largely the same, though some neighbors have moved on and new ones have moved in.  Sometimes, we read for months without waving and sometimes we chat it up like there aren’t kids screaming behind us.  I like it.

I do not earn income from this blog- there are no ads to click.  I do not have a book deal and am not recruiting readers.  I don’t have my own fabric line.  I do not give away $500 gift cards to Lowes.  I don’t have a stat counter that tells me who’s here and who’s not (seriously I can’t tell more than maybe what city you’re in). 

I write as a discipline to keep something in my life constant.  To remember to document this fabulous journey I’m on.  To force myself into some kind of conversation.  To share my children with their far-away family.  To make new friends and keep up with the old.

So, wave when you get a chance… there is certainly no pressure or pity on my end to deal with.  Promise.  It’s just me… thinking out loud again.

That being said, I have something very serious to discuss today.  Can you help me identify this tree/bush/shrub?  Despite my many years as an outdoor educator, my tree identifying skills are sadly lacking.  Fail.  The Boy has mentioned several times that he wants to rip the bush out, and I think he’s getting serious.  I have refused.  It’s a lovely bush.  It’s wild and unruly.  It fills a large open space between the porch and the pole barn.  I call it the Bee Bush because of the crazy hum that makes it alive in June when all the bees are working inside it.  It smells heavenly… like I imagine honeysuckle would.  But I don’t actually know what honeysuckle smells like, so I could be completely wrong here.

Please.  Its life is in your hands.  It’s next on The Boy’s ‘I’m Bored, Let’s Tear Something Up’ list.  Identify it.  Give it a name.  Give it purpose.  Save the tree!


About texasnorth

TexasNorth is a little farm in Western Michigan. It's home to 5 chickens, 25 longhorn cattle, a coonhound (Banjo), 1 barn cat, a husband, and 3 ridiculously funny children. The mom of this zoo has been known to mow the lawn in a skirt and roast marshmallows after dark. View all posts by texasnorth

25 responses to “maybe, maybe not

  • Grace

    I have no idea… but I have one of those bushes too. My friend calls it the Bumble Bush because the bees love it.

  • Colene

    I have no idea either. However, yesterday I walked by a tree that smelled heavenly. I commented to my fellow walkers “That smells awesome. Is it honeysucke?” I also have no idea what honeysuckle really smells like.

  • Carley

    Sorry… no idea… I don’t have mad tree info skills. = (
    Great post! I should wave more often.. even when I have nothing to wave about! = )

  • Cathy

    Where I grew up we had a bush just like that. Unfortunately, it got taken down because it had gotten taken by the bees, swarms and swarms. It wasn’t safe to walk near it.

    Ya know, I’ve no clue what it is called. I just know it as the bush.

  • Sunday Grant Photography

    i think you need to chain yourself to the tree in protest when he tries to cut it down. It is so pretty and makes you happy. I feel like I know what it is but I just can’t name it. You don’t know what honeysuckle smells like and you spent a summer in NC?

  • Stacey

    Is it a lilac bush? And please don’t let the boy cut it down.
    Waving from the other side of the state, holler if you need me!

  • Tricia

    I think it’s a variety of privet– do a google search for “privet image” and you’ll find several varieties that look remarkably like what you’ve got there. Check out images of English, European and Chinese privet in particular.

  • Mandi

    I’m right there with you on the periodic evaluation of the blog. I do that, too. You should know, though, that I thoroughly enjoy reading you blog and being a part of your “neighborhood.”

    And now to that bush. At first, I thought it was something akin to a wax myrtle because of the shape of the leaves. But a little research online didn’t reveal any blooms on the wax myrtle that matched your blooms. So, I dug a little deeper and I think it may be a Heptacodium miconioides, also known as a Seven-Son Flower. See what you think:

    And whatever you do, don’t let your husband remove it! It’s beautiful!

  • Cortney

    My vote is for privet, and I say if you like it and it’s not hurting anything, then keep it. Matt get’s like that too, sometimes, just wants to trim (or, most likely, cut to the ground) some plant I love just because I can’t give it a specific name or purpose. Boys.

    When I lived in my little cottage on Avondale all by myself, I had two giant shrubs on one side of my house that were actually shrub honeysuckle, which is one of those old-fashioned shrubs that don’t just show up anymore. I loved them, and the smell was divine. My nextdoor neighbors offered to help me “trim” them once, and since they were getting too big and I didn’t have the resources they had, I said sure. I came home from a trip with Matt to find them leveled to the ground, and the neighbors simply said, “yeah, sorry about that, once we got started, it just seemed like the best thing to do”. In reality, this had been the plan all along, they didn’t like the shrubs because they were across the driveway from their porch and they attracted bees. I, in an attempt to continue to be neighborly, said, “thanks, anyway, I know it was a lot of work”, went inside, and sobbed. Why does everyone always want to cut down my stuff?

    • Stacey

      This makes me so sad, we had a similar situation with our neighbor. There were three large trees on her property that bordered ours. She called a number of tree services to have them removed: to no avail, they wouldn’t cut them down because the trees were in such good shape, were thriving and recycling thousands of gallons of water. We came home from vacation to three large stumps along our property line. I mean technically they were hers, but really cut down three perfectly good trees because you don’t want to rake up the leaves in the fall…. Ridiculous I say. I would have raked the leaves….

      Sorry your neighbor cut down your bushes… it’s just not okay. =(

      • texasnorth

        OH MY WORD.

        I wouldl ike to talk to your neighbor, please. What did you do??? What did you say??? I guess if they’re on her side, there’s nothing you can do but that is SO. SAD.

    • texasnorth

      Cort. I am so stinkin’ proud of you for being neighborly… but holy cow! Talk about extreme!

      I once pulled a vine of ivy that was on our driveway. I pulled hard. It came off… along with about 35 feet of connected vine going across the lawn and up the side of our neighbor’s stucco house. It was so totally an accident, but Lordy did I feel like an idiot. Those people received many pies that month.

  • Margie

    I missed the entire needing to hear from us event, but Please Know I’m a Faithful Reader. When I can be. When the kids aren’t standing behing me and screaming. I get the whole idea behind the blog – it’s precisely why I do it. I just laughed to myself (it’s that or cry) when I was called, yet again, to see something funny on Max and Ruby. I mean, have they not realized I do a little more than watch TV? These evening swim lessons are killing me. It’s only 3:25 and I’m ready for a nap. I know you understand.

  • beckyswann

    We had the same bush by the side of our house growing up. And in the summer we would run by it because of all the bees…bzzzzzzzzzz

  • Amy B.

    Not sure the name of the bush, but it’s a pretty common landscaping bush. Our house in Texas had a hedge of them in front. They can be trimmed and kept neat and small or they can be allowed to take over. They do smell wonderful and are very busy with bees in May/June. Try taking a branch to a plant nursery – they’d probably be able to identify it right away.

  • Regina

    Hey Kate: I think it is a Morrow’s honeysuckle – a highly invasive bush that can easliy take over an area if not kept under control. some states have even tried to exterminate them – They do smell great. we have some in the area where I walk.

  • Cathy

    Oh I know the neighborly stuff, we first married, there was a magnolia tree which bloomed beautifully in the spring. She was always telling me Dave should trim it. They didn’t like the leaves in their yard and it was on the border between both yards.

    They were putting a new privacy fence up, Dave actually helped them before he had left for work. I had left to go do errands. Next day we saw they had cut a HUGE limb and I do mean HUGE. Dave was so ticked. He said to think I was actually helping them with the fence and they turned around and did that. It had not been in the way of the old fence.

  • elly

    is it bad that someone i know may have cut down an apple tree in their backyard so the batting cage would fit? maybe hypothetically???

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