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Brenda has been writing since grade school. She attended journalism school where she majored in professional writing. She loves to decorate, garden, read and spend time with her Yorkies.

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Long Road To Nowhere

The tree that is in another person's yard, but overhangs the other three, is filled with the sweetest of perfumes. It blooms out white and dozens of bees swoop down on it with an occasional butterfly. 

The bees and butterflies that swarm it seem drunk from the blooms. The strong scent hits me as soon as I open the patio door.

Does anyone recognize this tree that begins to bloom close to May?

Gnats and flies are driving the pupsters crazy, so I've taken measures to rid the indoors of them. I've taken all my plants outside and inspected them. Gnats seemed to gather round them. 

I looked up natural ways to rid my apartment of them. I've tried the vinegar in the glass with cellophane over it and poking small holes in so the gnats can get in, but then can't get out. 

I just inspected the glass that has sat for 24 hours, and don't see one gnat in it. I can zap the occasional fly, but gnats are just too small.

I put the indoor plants on tables underneath the shade trees. I'll have to get new potting soil, but I may let them enjoy the humidity for awhile. For we are certainly not short on rainfall.

Spring is such a magical time. When green shoots up from the dirt, and trees bloom, and color is in abundance. 

Lately my dreams are of me running through a narrow space and opening door after door. Just when I think I've opened the last door to the outside, there is yet another long stretch, lying serpentine and endless before me. 

It feels like the walls are closing in, so I run and run. Sometimes I have to bend down and sometimes crawl to keep going. I know I must not stop. I need a window, light, something. 

So in my dreams I keep moving, never stopping to rest. As though my life depends on my opening the final door, and feeling the open air. Possibly the hint of a breeze on my face. 

Sometimes I open a door and nothing is there but a wall, so I throw it closed and keep running. And running. Wondering if it will ever end. Or if it is just a long, long road to nowhere.
Brenda Pruitt
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  1. The tree is lovely as are all the blooms though I don't know what it might be...could it be a variety of lilac ? I have seen some so large that they are more like trees than bushes...

    Those dreams....I've not had a series like that with doors, but often had ones of roaming around in a house that was a bit like a maze...finding extra rooms and such.

  2. Your neighbor's tree is a common privet, and the fragrance is one of my favorites.
    I walked by two large ones growing on either side of an apartment building entrance in the city on Monday and stopped (twice - to and from the car) to bury my head in the blooms....

  3. The tree is so pretty. I had an gnat problem and the vinegar didn't work that great for me either. Cleaning the sink drains helped. Good luck, they are annoying.


  4. Brenda,
    This is what I use to get rid of fruit flies during the summer. Hopefully it will work on gnats...
    In a small bowl, put apple cider vinegar and a couple drops of dish washing soap. Don't cover the bowl. The soap helps to 'trap' them.
    Lori from LL Farm

    1. This worked for me also.

    2. These gnats that hang around house plants are not fruit flies. So this "remedy" doesn't work for them. I've tried. ;-) From what I've read, the plant gnats appear from the soil in the plant being too moist. Then the gnats lay eggs in there. You have to let the soil completely dry out to get rid of the gnats and eggs. Once you start watering again, do so sparingly. You never want the top of the soil to be saturated. To know when to water, stick your finger down in the soil. If it's dry up to your knuckle, then it's time to water.

    3. A nursery lady recently told me to fill a spray bottle with 1 part hydrogen peroxide to 4 parts water and spray the soil and plants. Even on my basil that I eat. No more gnats at my house.

  5. All of your photos are lovely.

    We are expecting rain today so maybe my blooms will look as happy and healthy as yours soon.

  6. Lovely pictures! I think that's a white lilac, but I might be mistaken.


    Brenda - try this method of catching gnats/fruit flies. It works! We do this every summer.

  8. I use the apple cider and drop or two of soap too for fruit flies. Haven't had knats. I remove all fruit (fridge it), wipe down the counters. Your idea of moving the plants outside is a good one. I am going to try the cleaning the drains too. Garbage may be going outside on the deck too. I had forgotten the irritation of fruit flies.

    Your photos are so crisp and beautiful Brenda.

  9. Your photo's are beautiful. I can imagine how lovely the privet smells. It will be awhile before they are blooming around here.

  10. Your photos are beautiful. The blossoms look familiar but can't place it right now. I've been having a recurring dream, that I've moved because of someone else and once I do I'm in complete shock because it is so ugly, and I cry and cry because I just want to go back to the Charmer.

  11. At first I thought your neighbor's tree was some kind of lilac, but I believe "rosekraft" above is correct in identifying it as a common privet. I wrote about the plant gnats in a reply to a thread above.

  12. Brenda, I had a terrible gnat problem all winter from my plants. Nothing worked until I let them dry out and then watered them with a mixture of 1 part hydrogen peroxide and 4 parts water. It did the trick. I wish I had found the solution sooner because they killed my lemon tree. If you choose to change the soil make sure to wash the roots. xo Laura

  13. I thought it was white lilac too especially when you described the perfume .

  14. Sure looks like a white lilac to me. My mom died when they were in bloom, so her casket was covered in her white ancient white lilacs and white snowballs. I love lilacs, too.

  15. Sure looks like lilac to me. The smell so wonderful. As far as the gnats, I know the cider vinegar and dish soap worked for my son. What is the difference between fruit flies and pnats. Beautiful pictures.

  16. Brenda, you have the most gorgeous plants and flowers. I kill most things I touch! Thank you for sharing these photos so that I can enjoy the beauty!! Have a wonderful evening!

  17. Your "tree" is a Tea Olive. I have a yard full of them.

  18. I think that eggs were laid in the soil of your house plants. Placing them outside was a good idea.
    Perhaps it is the change of season and increase in humidity that has us dreaming. I'm in the ocean and a giant 100 foot rogue wave is headed toward me. I'm scared poopless. I feel myself being pulled up the wall of the wave.I feel the sea water burning my nostrils. I know if the wave breaks and I get caught in it I'll be smashed to pieces but make it over the top. I'm overjoyed, elated! I've survived! Then I look out to sea and see another giant wave approaching and one behind that, and another and another. I then feel like I'm going insane. Then I wake up.

  19. the gnats could be fungus gnats. They like the soil in pots that are a little too wet. Fruit gnats can be kept down by placing a napkin or dishtowel over the fruit.

  20. I wouldn't venture to guess the plant, it's probably native to your area.

    Do you have those fly tapes that are long sticky thingies that unravel and you can tack up or hang in area that they concentrate? I've used them for flies in the house. Nasty for awhile but it keeps them from reproducing. You can get them in hardware stores or HD. Also, if the gnats are in swarms, hit them with an organic sort of spray cleaner so the pups are okay.

    Did you get the effects of the Oklahoma tornado's last night? I was so worried about you and was all over our news.

    Jane x

  21. Your tree looks like wax leaf ligustrum. I am no botanist, but those are blooming around here, too, including three we have in the back yard. They are super fragrant for a little while, then the flowers are gone.

    1. Yes,'s a wax leafed ligustrum.

  22. Beautiful photos, Brenda! I've never had a dream like that...but have them sometimes where I go from room to room, with hidden rooms all over the place, Strange.

  23. A type of honeysuckle... I have it in my yard.

  24. Brenda,
    I just had to tell you, I look forward to seeing what you post everyday! Thank you!

  25. Your blog is a precious jewel! I'm so pleased to have found it!

    With love, Sita
    Melbourne, Australia.

  26. I have no idea what kind of tree that is. It's very pretty though. We have a problem with carpenter bees buzzing around on our back deck. They've been drilling holes in our woodwork too! They made a whole in our wooden front door too! So annoying. I'm sure once that tree stops blooming the flies and gnats will leave. Love your new header too1

  27. Beautiful tree! Hope you find the solution to the gnat problem. You've gotten some good ideas in the comments

  28. Your photos are lovely, Brenda. The world is finally beginning to bloom here, as well. Pollen is everywhere...I guess I have to take the good with the bad! At least it's not snow covering my car! ;)

  29. Beautiful photos and writing. I think fear is the driving force of some dreams...esp. ones about houses, moving, trying to get out. I have my share of panic dreams too.


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