Fragrant Quote for August 17th, 2012-Notes from nature's garden By Frances Anne Bardswell

Credit for Image of Poplar Tree

The Black Poplar, Populus nigra, is among our greatest favourites, always one of the first in leaf and never more enjoyable than in early spring, when the opening leaf-buds of a vivid olive-green colour contrast strikingly with the dark tint of the bark, and give out a powerful and delicious scent. The whole neighbourhood of the trees is pervaded by fragrance that reminds everybody of something different, so it must be a very compound smell. To one it recalls incense, another is reminded of the West Indian Islands, and a third of the delicious aromatic smell of a chemist's shop, so far more refreshing than that of a perfumer's. Later on, the perfume is far less marked, but comes back in whiffs when the sun shines again after a shower of rain.

In a wind-storm, when in full leaf, these trees behave beautifully; they bend and toss and throw up their arms wildly, straining at the roots; but they keep their feet in spite of all the wind can do, and are none the worse for the tussle afterwards. We indulge in one short poem about the Poplar tree, for it is well deserved. It is by Margaret Campbell.

Oh the Poplar is a lady gay and fair
Who will find some quiet pleasure anywhere,
In soft chapter to the birds,
And her leaves like whispered words
Carry far her gentle speech upon the air.

Pass her early when the day is but begun
Shy, swift smiles are hers to greet the morning sun;
You may note them as you pass,
For the shadow on the grass
Dances daintily and catches every one.

Silver green her leaves are cool the summer long
As they twirl and pat and flutter small and strong;
But for Autumn rich and bold,
She will turn them all to gold
And they float like notes of music to his song.