Visiting the Beautybush
Artist Marjolein Bastin
Subject Location Netherlands
Every fall my mother used to give me a few branches of her pride and joy, the Beautyberry, to take home. To be honest I did not really care for the branches filled with purple berries. They looked plastic to me. But of course I did not want to hurt her feelings and always found a place for them in my home, somewhere in the back.
About twenty years ago we started working with our gardener to determine what plants, bushes, trees and flowers to put in our garden. He thought that the Beautyberry would look beautiful and convinced us it should be in our garden. I had no idea what a Beautyberry was. Then later in the Fall I recognized it immediately: there was my mother’s Beautyberry, complete with bunches of purple berries. Now it is one of my favorites and whenever I can I put some branches on my table. I wish that my mother could see me now!
It is also a favorite of the white-crowned sparrows that are traveling south right now. For days they have been eating nothing but purple!