Thursday, August 30, 2012

Aloyssia Grattisima or White Brush

I looked up the medicinal properties of this prolific weed.  Several websites suggest that the leaves or bark of this fragrant bush can be boiled and used to treat digestive difficulties or anxiety.

As I biked down the street, past the big overflow ditch, the perfume overwhelmed me.  The plant is nondescript.  Tiny reams of tiny white blossoms on a scraggly bush, perhaps 5 feet tall, with rather scraggly silver gray leaves.  Definitely not much of a floral super model.  Typically prefers to reside in ditches, little draws.  Anywhere that might catch a little run off in a late summer thunderstorm. 

They won't catch your eye.

Oh, but we have many other senses, and they will make sure you don't forget the olfactory!

As I bicycled along, I tried to come up with a good description of the fragrance.  Pink.  Wait.  That is not much of a description of the smell.  The bush isn't even pink!  But it smells like some kind of pink candy.  Cotton candy? 

Sweet.  A perfume specially designed for 6 year old girls.  Or 45 year old women for that matter! 

I have heard some people describe the Chihuahuan Desert as a place God-forsaken.  Brutal.  Boring.  Harsh.

I wonder if those people ever got out of their car for very long? 

You might be surprised at the many delightful sights, sounds and smells this beautiful desert gives.  I haven't ever gotten around to boiling the leaves or bark of this bush, but I can testify that bicycling past that draw filled with carnival candy perfume definitely drops my blood pressure a notch or two. 

Just ask me about the antidepressant properties of the Pitaya, fruit of one of the local cactus here sometime.  We enjoy the tuna, the magenta fruit of the prickly pear, but pitaya is in a category all its own.

Think pale pink strawberry flavored kiwi.  Tangy.  Actually the size of a medium kiwi.  Covered with a skin loaded with 3/4 inch long spikes.  Which easily peels off with a paring knife.  Revealing the pale pinkish flesh, dotted with tiny black seeds that pop when you bite them. 

No food has awed me so immediately as the pitaya.  No food has ever wowed my friends like the  pitaya. 

We don't have many, but we have one big cactus by the steps to our bakery, and I keep my open for the fruit as they turn from green to red.  They make me smile.  Even more so than the figs in our back yard.  Can you believe that? 




paul s said...

I am glad that you are writing again. I hope things are going well. You have been missed.

Anonymous said...

That white brush makes for some really good honey too. Bees love it. Love to see it bloom after we have had a rain. Mom

Anonymous said...

I've missed you, Ginger! Thanks for coming back. -- Jill in NC

Cindy Fendley said...

I often come to your site and was sad because there was no new post. I was afraid you were lost to us in SW virginia. I am sooo thankful you have returned. Your writing is inspired and such a pleasure to read. Thanks for coming back. Now that I can picture your home and the desert you live in I can picture many of the things you write about. Blessings my friend.

tmastgrave said...

Just wanted to let you all know that we nominated you for the one lovely blog award.

Rhiannah Warm said...

This was the first post of yours that I read and I can completely empathize with you in terms of the not being able to write. I have ended up in that place too and allowed fear of failure to keep me away from the very thing that I knew would improve my sense of self. It was as if I would not allow myself the pleasure when other aspects of life were becoming tough to deal with or hard choices had to be made. Thank you so much for coming back and sharing some of how it was for you and I pray that you and your family with be blessed as the days go by.