Tangled Up
Just Ordinary


I have a butterfly bush in my garden.  It is Not Doing Well.  It is leggy.  It is spindly.  It has been infested by some sort of leaf-eating pest.  It looks worse and worse every year.  I have pruned it.  I have top-dressed it with compost.  I have moved it.  I have talked to it.  I have Had It . . . and, in fact, I recently made the decision to Get Rid of It.

Yesterday, though, when I went out to get the mail, I saw this. . .

Butterfly bush etc aug 18 09 037 

This Swallowtail Butterfly did not care that my butterfly bush is spindly.

Butterfly bush etc aug 18 09 020 

It did not care that my butterfly bush is leggy.

Butterfly bush etc aug 18 09 013 

It was, in fact, unconcerned that several leaves have been munched by a pest.

Butterfly bush etc aug 18 09 019 

This Swallowtail just enjoyed gathering nectar from the (few) beautiful and colorful blossoms on my butterfly bush.  For this Swallowtail, my garden offered exactly what he needed!  It was perfect.

The butterfly bush. . . has been redeemed!


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Everyone and everything needs the chance at redemption. Good thing that beautiful butterfly came along at the right time.

Nancy Williams

Before you get rid of it -- do you cut it back, way back, every year?

denise copeland

Earlier today I had an opportunity to look at your images from your photography class. They were all so beautiful - and memorable. Each one was exquisite. The image that stays with me is the incredible one of Jenny leaping into the water.

Do you have any special plans for them?


They respond to being pruned really hard - to within a foot of the ground. In England they grow like weeds from building gutterings.

I love your pictures and your blog.


I found your site today while scouring the internet for "large shrub seed pod" images. It never ceases to amaze me how a quirky search like this can introduce me to something I'd never expected but needed. Your manner of living and loving as demonstrated through the care taken with your site and interests inspires me to move through my own life with more grace, patience and perhaps a tad more design. Thank you for being there for a stranger, for inspiring the spirit of life in us all in a way you might not have realized you would, to brighten a day that had its own reason for ending gray.

"And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."

Maryanne Williamson

Thank you.


ps-I think I may have the worms you need to fulfill your goal of worm composting in 2010. Feel free to email me. :)

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