People have asked me when the best time for pruning is. My answer depends on my familiarity with the person. For some, it is simply the textbook answer, but with those who know me well I tell them this: "When you have your snips in hand and are in front of what needs pruning. That is the best time to prune." It is literally the way I approach pruning everything.
With this in mind, I was out along the driveway with snips in hand, looking for vengeance on that $#^%$EW#%^&! winter creeper and honeysuckle. SNIP! Snip snip snip. P-U-U-U-L-L! Repeat. Again. Repeat. And so I attacked the invasive species along the driveway. Then I saw some flowers. Purple flowers. They looked familiar so I sniffed them. Hidden under a mantle of vines was a lilac bush. It had spent years oppressed by the fast-paced spreading and hoarding of the sunlight from the invasives. It survived by having just a few spriggly branches sticking out of the mass to photosynthesize just enough light to survive until it could be rediscovered. I was so moved by this sad plant that I spent more time cutting away, very gingerly, the invasive vines to reveal the lilac below. I know lilacs are not native here, but I have a soft spot for them. I have many soft spots for many plants, but lilacs are one of my favorites. If I could grow plumeria and gardenia here I would do that too. Just like everything that is inside my house, most of my plants outside are from somebody or have a memory attached to it. I transplant things wherever I move. This time, however, I think I can forego that process. It will be Bonnie's lilac and will invoke thoughts of other lovely ladies that I know and love now and those from days gone by.
That was a few days ago. Since then, I have discovered multiple clusters of the flowers. None are large clusters, but they all sing a song of gratitude in purple minor. Next year perhaps the song will be in joyful major. :-)