In an article in The Conversation about Roadside Wildflowers, the author states that…
Since the end of World War II, 97% of the UK’s wildflower meadows have been dug up or destroyed. Many won’t remember a time when the countryside was filled with grassland that rippled with rainbows of flowers, but they are likely to recognise the intense yellow glare of pesticide-soaked oilseed rape fields that dominate rural landscapes today.
Here I am in the Midwest USA and I cannot imagine the joy of finding a roadside wildflower meadow! I do try to find parking lot beauty, sky beauty, nature’s beauty wherever I can, but I have yet to find a wildflower meadow. I do notice lovely small colors in early and late spring, weed like plants in the Midwest that must do for us, but no riot of colors as seen in UK wildflower meadows.
Meadows of flowers? I cannot imagine such joy.
However, I grew up near a native Illinois prairie, but rarely appreciated it. The colors are much more mute, scruffy somehow compared to a wildflower meadow.
Nearby, a group of conservationists at the Morton Arboretum have preserved this mostly now gone natural wonderland, the Illinois Prairie. I must visit and report back, keeping in mind that no, the colors won’t be as dramatic, but I am practiced in finding beauty.
I have often used this more subtle beauty in my poetry and fiction, and I do appreciate nature’s beauty and healing properties–but admit to loving the dramatic colors of autumn more.
Thanks for reading. May you find beauty everywhere as well.
(Image of milkweed in a prairie from the Creative Commons.)