Confession / by Karie Luidens

Wisteria (1).jpeg

I have a confession. I’ve stolen from my neighbors. 

 Wisteria in all its glory in a neighbor’s yard.

Wisteria in all its glory in a neighbor’s yard.

Over the last week or two the whole neighborhood has suddenly become flush with fragrant wisteria blossoms. Block by block, the dog and I pass them in countless forms, from well-groomed trellises braided with vines to unkempt bushes so loaded down with their pendant flowers that they look like overflowing baskets. 

Their color pops delicately against a landscape of desert browns and greens. Their scent is sweet and wafts thickly down the street. It’s not just me: each patch I’ve seen has been abuzz with drunken bees. 

 A bit of random chain link out back; future home of some climbing wisteria?

A bit of random chain link out back; future home of some climbing wisteria?

The desire was sudden and visceral: I wanted some of this wisteria in my garden. So I did a bit of research and found that fresh cuttings will take root when replanted. I suppose I could've knocked on someone's door to ask their permission, but instead yesterday morning I got impulsive. A thick tangle of branches was overhanging the sidewalk. A moment later, with a twist and snap, it was down a twig. Who would ever notice? 

But I’ll notice if this cutting grows into a whole new wisteria patch. And there just happen to be a couple panels of chain link behind the garage that must once have fenced off the driveway, but now stand alone, serving no apparent purpose. Why not make a trellis of them?

Why not indeed? When I got home from the walk I promptly watered the stolen cutting into the dirt at its base. If all goes well, that baby wisteria will put down roots and start climbing—another plant to nurture in the months ahead.