What a Beautiful Scent

Welcome to Colleen’s Corner. This is a column meant for fun and some information About myself: I am Colleen Fielding, a Freelance Photographer you often see me on the side of the road  or in various places taking photos of different things animals, birds, places, people etc.  l have lived in Lumby just over 8 years,you have seen my photos in the newspaper (Lumby Valley Times) and once in awhile in the Vernon Morning Star, and the Lumby Art Gallery. Photography is my passion. Disclaimer:  The information on some of my photos that I write about a lot of times come from the Internet or books I research them, hopefully the facts are as close to the truth as I can come.

Taking a walk in my yard,or around town, the sweet smell of the Lilacs sends a beautiful aroma to my nose awakening my senses. The scent is strong, giving me a feeling of joy when I smell them. If it is a warm sunny day, the Lilacs with the most scents seem to be the dark purple. When the Lilacs come out, you know Spring has arrived. The unfortunate thing about Lilacs is the small amount of time they spend with us. Most of them last for about 3 weeks.There are some varieties that will bloom a few times in a season, but I am not sure if they are zoned for us or not.They love the sun, the more sun Lilacs have the happier they are. They don’t like to have wet soggy roots.

Lilacs come from the Oleaceae family which also has Olives, Ash, and Jasmine in the same grouping.

The word Lilac implies the lighter shade of Purple, but Lilacs come in many different colors: Dark Purple, Light Purple, Pink, Blue, White, Magenta, and bi-color.

Lilacs are not native to North America but I am glad we have them. They are from Europe, and Asia. Around the 18th century was when they were introduced here. 

You will find some of the well known people throughout history that grew Lilacs, Thomas Jefferson, loved them so much he wrote them into his book on gardening. George Washington, Vincent Van Gough, and Claude Monet were so inspired by the beauty of the Lilacs they would put them into a lot of their paintings.

In Burlington Ontario at the Royal Botanical Gardens there you will find about 745  or more Lilac varieties making it one of the largest collections in the world.

The Lilacs scents can be different each year, sometimes they are stronger or weaker smelling than the year before. If the Spring and Summer are cool, the scents will be different than they would be in a hotter season.

Because the wood of Lilac is very dense it’s great to make things out of it like: outdoor Furniture, Musical Instruments, Knife Handles, Pens, etc.

 A study on Alzheimer’s which was done in 2004 found that certain scents which people could not smell like Lilacs, Lemons, Strawberries, and also the scent of Leather could predict if a patient that had minimal to mild cognitive impairment would develop Alzheimer’s Disease.

Lilac shrubs can grow up to about 20 feet while some of the different varieties of Lilac trees  can grow 30- 40 feet tall.

Not only do Hummingbirds, and Butterflies love them, did you know you can eat the Lilac flower as well?

Different cultures have different ideas using Lilacs. In Russia it is believed that if a sprig of Lilac is held over top of a newborn baby, it will present wisdom for the child.

In Ireland the Celtics thought that with the intoxicating scent, it was magical (which of course it is)

For your 8th Wedding anniversary, the Lilac is the flower to give. 

In the Victorian era, widows were seen to be wearing Lilacs as a symbol of an old love.

If you are going to prune your Lilac bush do it after it has flowered. Trimming  (not pruning)them down at least once a year is good for them.

If you live in an area that is susceptible to WildFires then plant Lilacs everywhere, as they are Fire Retardant.

Do you have a smelly room? And some Lilacs to it, the room will smell sweet in no time at all.

The scent of Lilacs is used in a lot of Aromatherapy for relaxation.

The Lilac is the state flower for New Hampshire.

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