I took time to reflect and research and sure enough found meaning beneath the surface. Wisteria connotes concepts of love, endurance, longevity, honor and creative expansion. In Japanese art, we see the weeping wisteria as a symbol of love lost. However, it is also reflective of the ability of the heart to endure loss, exemplified by the strong, durable vines which live and even flourish in harsh conditions. In Feng Shui, the tapered clusters of wisteria blossoms are symbolic of bowing or kneeling, reflective of honor and respect. Shin Buddhism also views wisteria as symbolic of prayer or thoughtful reverence, as the appearance of the branches and blossoms “lowering their heads” reminds us of our need for peace and tranquility. Because the vine has a life span of 100 years or more, wisteria is also symbolic of longevity and immortality. European families mark the passage of generations through the growth of this vine. Also, wisteria’s spiral pattern of growth is reflective of expansion of consciousness. The spirals point to our inner awareness which spans outward, indicative of our influence on the outside world. In other words, wisteria vines remind us that everything is connected on every level.
My initial reaction was, “Wow, that’s a beautiful tree!,” followed by, “Yay! Spring is in the air!” and, “I can’t believe that tree grows just a few feet from the dumpster!” However, I now appreciate that the beauty of wisteria lies beneath the surface as well. I assumed it was the physical characteristics of the tree that had attracted me. Perhaps, I also connected to the deeper symbolism, although consciously unaware.
Throughout the day, I smiled each time I glanced over at my jars of wisteria or noticed their smell permeating my home. Yes, they were beautiful and fragrant, but they were also a reminder… a reminder that whether you are getting the mail, taking out the trash, or doing anything else for that matter… always take time to smell the flowers.