In late May, we went for a lovely walk on the Rockdale River Trail. It begins in a very woody area and then it crosses over a cleared area where the power lines are located. Suddenly, you are under more trees, and you are right beside the Yellow River and the shade is very welcome. Alongside the river were the amazingly beautiful Mountain Laurel. (Kalmia latiflolia). I have written about it before!
Aren't these just the most amazing parasols of beauty? I was that pleased when I saw them that I said, "Oh, you are so beautiful". As you must know, that reminded me of a song.
"You Are So Beautiful" is a song made famous by Joe Cocker. It is an amazing vocal! However, did you know that it was written by Billy Preston? If you watch the following video, that is Billy Preston on the keyboard! I remember reading that it was Paul's idea that he wanted to ask Billy to be a member of the Beatles and John's response was that they couldn't get along as a group of four so why try with five members? (As always, you never know if anything like this was ever said but I found it amusing and interesting.) Of course, he has been called the 5th Beatle anyway!
As much as I love the BEATLES, I do not love the BEETLES that are visiting my sassafras tree just now! What do I do to make them EX-Beetles? I take a thick garden glove and pinch the hard-shelled things off. (You must be quick, they fly off very fast!) Now, as hard as I press upon them, it doesn't kill them but it stuns them enough that I can then place them on the paved walkway and press a heavy flowerpot upon them. The Japanese beetle is not a pest in Japan since it has natural predators. You see, it is essential that we try to keep the Japanese beetles away since the sassafras tree is a host for the Spicebush swallowtail butterfly caterpillar! It is really something. It starts out (in its first "instar", isn't that a great word?) looking like...and I am not kidding.... like a bird dropping! It does that as a camouflage, of course! It even has two fake eyes! It closes itself up into a leaf during the day and comes out at night to feed on the leaves, provided the beetles haven't eaten all the leaves! It gets bigger and bigger and eventually will become a cocoon. And then, hopefully it will become...the spicebush swallowtail butterfly! (It really prefers a spicebush but it will also accept a sassafras!) Now...I might have to do a post about the sassafras tree soon! It's very interesting too! Three different leaves on the same tree? It's true!
If I see a spicebush swallowtail butterfly in my front yard, I will be singing that song again! "You Are So Beautiful"!
And I will be singing "Get Back" to the Japanese beetles! "Get back to where you once belonged", that is perfect to sing to them! LOL!
Buddy Holly and the Crickets.... John Lennon is supposedly the one who thought up the name of their group to honor Buddy Holly and his "crickets" but instead of "beetles" it became "BEATLES" since John loved wordplay. I'm sure you all know that but just in case you don't, now you do!
(This is one of the later instars, where it turns green.)