Of all the flowers in my garden, I like my yellow daylilies the best.
My flower beds are covered in snow today, with only brown sticks indicating where flowers grew as recently as early November. But I'm already thinking ahead to the blooms that will begin emerging, starting with crocuses in March and continuing until the last chrysanthemums fade away just before Thanksgiving.
But it's those yellow Stella d'Oro daylilies that keep catching my eye every summer, looking like the gold stars for which they were named.
One problem with them, though. At least once each summer, usually during a spell of particularly hot and dry weather, the flowers will stop blooming. It's as though they hit a wall. No new blooms come forth and, before you know it, the plant has nothing but ugly dried-up stems amid the green leaves.
I used to think the plants had finished for the season - maybe even died. Now I know better. When this happens, those plants need some extra love in the form of deadheading. I spend time pulling out all the dead stuff and I give the plants some water and maybe some fertilizer. In a couple of days, I see green stems emerging and the flowers return.
The new year is approaching and I'm thinking about the lessons I learned from the daylilies. Every now and then, we hit the wall. Our productivity slows down or maybe even stops, our creativity seems to have dried up, or our motivation takes a vacation and leaves us behind. When this happens, we often become frustrated and might even think about quitting.
It's time to take a cue from the daylilies.
We need to tear out all the dead stuff that's weighing us down. Maybe it's a bad attitude, maybe it's something from our past that we should have dealt with long ago. Maybe we're just tired and need a break.
Whatever it is, once it's removed, we can begin to see new growth and we can bloom again.
Here's wishing you a new year filled with new growth and beauty.
Susan Rupe is managing editor for InsuranceNewsNet. She formerly served as communications director for an insurance agents' association and was an award-winning newspaper reporter and editor. Contact her at Susan.Rupe@innfeedback.com.
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