a cultivar of callistemon (thank god for the internet, yes?) have you crushed their leaves yet to release their scent? i haven’t, but now that i know that that is a possibility, i will be doing it soon.
this is a photograph of new leaves of a bottlebrush shrub just a block from my home. i suppose you could describe the setting as a thicket of bottlebrush as they’ve been used to screen the backyards of several homes along this stretch of the road. it’s interesting to note that the bottlebrush is a shrub, for surely when you look at them growing here in southern california, you would think that they were trees–at the least they are cultivated and trimmed to take on the appearance of trees. the hummingbirds love them, although i’ve yet to figure out where the hummingbird is able to extract nectar from its flowers.
it is, however, the new leaves that struck me as being particularly beautiful the day i photographed them. hanging there, sun-dappled (isn’t ‘dapple’ or ‘dappled’ a wonderful word? so fresh and crisp, it even has a tangy sound to it when spoken aloud–go ahead and say it now out loud and see what i mean–don’t worry if someone will overhear you, you’re already suspect, what with your head stuck in your Macbook, laptop, desktop, mobile device–there, now, don’t you feel better for having heard the word ‘dapple’?)
but it struck me how we often ignore/avoid the new in favor of the old, the tried-and-true, the hackneyed, the well-worn path when the new, the fresh, the untrodden beckons with the subtle glow of sunlight. i believe that today, a monday (a traditional beginning), that i will look for the new, strike out for the unknown, stretch myself by making my own path, eschewing (another favorite word, say it out loud too, you’ll see) the obvious, the blooming flower let’s say, and look for the beautiful new leaf right in front of me.