I’ve already bared my soul to you about my love of rhubarb.

Now it’s time to fess up about another spring plant.

I’m nutty about lilacs. I love everything about them – their various shades of purple, pink and white, their intoxicating sweet and spicy fragrance, the clusters of tiny flowers, which I’ve just learned are called panicles.

Love it all!

Perhaps what intrigues me most about lilacs is that they are only around for a couple of weeks in the spring, and not everywhere. Their message is simple: “I’m special. You’d better love me now while you have the chance.”

Lilacs grow best in areas that have a winter. They need the time to rest up before the next season of blooming. It’s good advice for all of us. My sister in Dallas doesn’t get to experience the joy of lilacs. It’s too darned hot in her neck of the woods.

A trio of lilacs

Every day on my trip to the pasture, I drive past a building that right now has three lilacs blooming side- by- side. There’s white, lavender and deep purple. It takes my breath every single time I see this spectacular trio. On Tuesday I stopped to take some pictures and breathe in that yum-o-licious fragrance.

It was bliss.

When a clerk at the office supply store inquired how my day was going, I replied, “It’s wonderful. Have you noticed that the lilacs are blooming?” This is a habit of mine, to talk to strangers about things they don’t expect to hear. It’s actually quite entertaining.

He gave me a blank stare and then said, “Hmm. I guess I haven’t noticed.” I think he was hoping I’d leave soon.

“You owe it to yourself to go out and find some lilacs and just inhale.”

Now he was getting uncomfortable. He probably thought he had a real nut case on his hands. But he didn’t say that. He shrugged, waited a beat and then asked if he could help me with anything else.

I smiled. “No thanks. I only needed this paper.”

I hope he takes me up on my suggestion. Lilacs are one of the miracles of the world and everyone could benefit from lilac therapy. I’ve tried many times to cut them and bring them into the house. Once I even tried spreading them around my bed, for the pure hedonistic experience of sleeping in lilacs.

None of it was too successful. The lilacs quickly wilted.

What I think I’ve learned is that lilacs are best appreciated when left wild.

It makes me ask myself a hard to-answer question. Can I appreciate beauty in its natural state without having to take a piece of it and make it my own?

Bud and Pepper and my experiences with them in the pasture are helping me learn to value the natural world for what it is.  And to be grateful for every moment I have on this amazing planet.

My mother loved white lilacs.

I hope you’ll stop sometime this week and smell the lilacs.

Eat your lunch beside a lilac bush. It will brighten your day. No doubt about it.

Just don’t wait too long.