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Lilac season offers respite to war-weary Kyiv residents

STORY: Kyiv residents say lilacs in full bloom provide a temporary respite from the realities of war.

Mid-May is the peak of lilac season in Ukraine.

(Nina Dadochkina, Artist)

“I feel inspired here. I turn into another person here. After all these nights, I am reborn. I feel wonderful here. Speaking to people, to nature – this is what last year lacked. It was horrible last year, I was not in Kyiv. It was very scary and I missed this beauty.”

(Dmytro Skomorokh, Ukrainian soldier)

“This is my favorite color – lilac. The lilac color is wonderful. I like lilac. We are from Lysychansk, Luhansk Region – it is now occupied. We lived in a private house. There were always lilac trees around our house and street. When they bloom, the smell and feeling is unbelievable, both for the eyes and senses.”

The flowers are a hallmark of Kyiv’s botanical garden

It has 21 lilac varieties and more than 1,000 bushes