With the delirious scent of wild plum blossoms everywhere along the country roads and along the edges of woods, there comes the blurring of purple-rose color of the redbud trees. Now the small pea-shaped flowers burst from bare black stems which seemed, only a week or so ago, almost as dead as fire-charred wood. Now the} are alive; they are covered with beauty and color.
Cercis canadensis L.
April. Woods, thickets.
They come together, the wild plum blossoms and the redbuds, and with them, as a perfect complement in color, is the pale golden green of the new willow leaves. These are among the first tangible changes in the landscape - now after an April rain there are those masses of pink, those masses of white, those veilings of pale green where the willow.- stand. And for a moment in Time it is the most beautiful and most welcome sight in all the world.
Redbud grows almost everywhere in woods in the southern two-thirds of Illinois. It blossoms when the trees are still small, and continues while the gnarled, black-barked tress grow older and older, until that annual burst of pink flowers seems almost incongruous in one so aged. There is a nice gradation of color on the redbuds. When the carmine hud- open on the black twigs, they -end out thin, pink stems with slim, pointed buds of bright deep pink, deeper on the calyx. Then when the flower opens, it bleaches to a paler pink while the calyx remain- almost red. the thin stem lavender-pink. Among the masses of flowers, crisp against the blue April sky, flit the wide-eyed, little ruby-crowned kinglets, sleek and green, on their way to the northwoods to nest.