Deer and Roses

Things are growing like crazy here at the farm.  Every day I try to take a walk around the perimeter, checking on various plants and wildlife.  Since I don’t have much knowledge of what’s what, other than what we had on our property when I was growing up, I spend a lot of time looking at books and the internet trying to identify things. 

There are gooseberries growing in a little patch with red raspberries, but there are also prickly gooseberries growing in random places.  What I thought were black raspberries, I think are blackberries, at least that’s what they look like now that they’ve blossomed and the berries are starting to grow. 

Gooseberries

Prickly Gooseberries

Black Raspberries

Blackberries

There are also beautiful wild rose bushes scattered throughout.  There was such an abundance of blossoms that I started researching rose hips, finding this awesome article and making plans to keep watch and determine when the hips were ready to pick.  That was my big plan anyway.

Beautiful Wild Roses

Another recent event on the farm was the sighting of deer running through our fields and behind our fence line.  They were huge and beautiful and I was so happy to see them close up!  Until I discovered that they are very fond of rose blossoms.  The bush closest to the house, the one with all the blossoms, has been decimated, picked clean by those dainty, velvety lips. 

Wild Roses After the Deer Stopped for Breakfast

There are still some blossoms and there are other rose bushes, but it’s likely that they won’t last until fall when it’s time for harvest.  Since I’m wiser than I was a few days ago, it wouldn’t surprise me if deer enjoy the hips as much as they enjoyed the blossoms.

This is a lesson that I’ve learned repeatedly and I think most of us have, otherwise we wouldn’t have sayings like: “The best laid plans of mice and men often run awry,” or “Don’t count your chickens before they’re hatched.” 

It’s hard to know where to draw the line between being proactive and making plans and being adaptable, able to take it in stride when things change unexpectedly.  When my plans are thwarted, I can get angry, I can try to control things so they go my way, or I can look at the situation anew and determine my next steps.  If I were mature, I would always choose the latter, but sadly, that’s not always the case. 

Plans for all the things I can make with rose hips are up in the air at the moment.  It’s not possible to know in June what will be happening in September.  There’s still a chance that I can make a pie, jam, cake, or cup of tea with some rose hips but in the meantime, I’m just going to enjoy the blossoms that remain.

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