Monday, February 14, 2011

Cordate Shaped for Valentine's Day

In honor of St. Valentine's Day, I'm re-posting this blog from the fall.  When your heart comes under fire that is the time to be brave and turn up the love, right?

Cordate : a botanical term used to describe a leaf when it is shaped like a heart.

The most common cordate-shaped leaf can be found on the Redbud.  Redbuds are comparable in height to Dogwoods.  Before the the Redbud's leaves emerge, it first produces red or purple flowers. There are a few special days in the spring when the hearts and the flowers cling on the branches together and it can be quite breath-taking.

Through the Spring and Summer the Redbuds are covered with garlands of hearts.  No matter how bitter, jaded or cynical you are, it is difficult to think of anything except love when you see them.  In the Fall, the Redbuds steal the spotlight again when their leaves turn yellow.  As the breezes blow, the whole yard is dappled with yellow hearts, like a classroom strewn with construction paper after the kids create their Valentines.  I find myself feeling sweet and happy as I rake all the hearts into a pile, I find myself singing even.... I begin looking around the garden and taking stock of all the Cordate shaped leaves I find.  Here are just a few:

morning glory

Elephant ears


It seems, people are always looking for signs and direction.  We are looking for encouragement.  We especially yearn for these signs from the Universe, or other people, or a feeling inside ourselves.

I think the Cordate-shaped leaves all around us just might be the sign everyone is looking for.  (Isn't it sweet that the universe communicates with us in a modern 'emoticon' kind of way?)

....I would guess that the universe is saying:   Love really IS the answer,'love really IS all around, what people really need IS more love... you get the idea...  Maybe that verse in Corinthians that they read at weddings isn't just about romance, maybe it's about life and how we conduct ourselves.  Maybe the 'greatest of these' really is love.

When you get to the bottom of why people want to give, to help, to spend time, there is love.  People want to receive more love. They want to feel more love and the best way to do that is to give it away.

As a result: love, not money, becomes  the answer to a world of hurt.  Our best moments are motivated by love.  Think of your power as an individual if you were brave enough to always act out of love.  Love is not risk free, but its returns are infinite.  If we are looking for a sign, we've got it....and it's not in the's in the trees.

"Time is how you spend your love."  Zadie Smith


  1. Beautiful blog post!

  2. Laurie, I forwarded your blog to fellow plant loving friends--she mentioned this post, I came to read and you convinced me "love" is the answer! Lovely! Nanette (Shannons Aunt).

  3. Oh thanks for passing it on Aunt Nanette! That is the best compliment the blog and possibly I have ever gotten!!