Patterns and Textures in Nature, Part 2




Day 221 - 'Rita's Gold' Boston Fern

Fern - Day 221Fern - Day 221 Interesting patterns on this fern in the Tropical Greenhouse.


Day 220 - Frost Patterns on the Window

Frost - Day 220Frost - Day 220 It reached -15 today, so needless to say I stayed home where it was warm and cozy.  This is my first attempt at photographing frost.  Not many of our windows have frost but I hope to play with this a bit more tomorrow.  


Day 219 - A Little Sunshine on a Snowy Day

Velvet Groundsel - Day 219Velvet Groundsel - Day 219 Velvet Groundsel in the Semitropical Greenhouse.  I think all of us in the Chicago area could use a little sunshine and warmth.  Snowed all day here and tomorrow the temperature is supposed to dip to -15. 


Day 218 - Tropical Beauties

Orchids - Day 218Orchids - Day 218 With all the snow we've had it's nice to step inside the warm Tropical Greenhouse and see some flowers in bloom, even if you can still see the snow and icicles clinging to the outside glass of the greenhouse.  I love the patterns and lines of this orchid.


Day 217 - Herb Garden in Snow

Oregano in Snow - Day 217Oregano in Snow - Day 217 From my kitchen window I can see the remains of my summer herb garden.  The oregano stands tall while everything else is buried in snow.  Makes me hungry for a Greek salad right about now.


Day 216 - Remnants of a Summer Garden

Remnants of a Summer Garden - Day 216Remnants of a Summer Garden - Day 216


Day 215 - Snow Patterns on New Year's Day

Snow - Day 215Snow - Day 215 Happy New Year!  We had a big snow storm today - lots and lots of beautiful snow!  I stepped outside for a bit and captured the snow clinging to the bark of one of the oak trees in our yard.


Day 214 - Cactus Patterns

Cactus - Day 214Cactus - Day 214 Goodbye to 2013...Hello to 2014!


Day 213 - Silver Snow Korean Fir

Silver Snow Korean Fir - Day 213Silver Snow Korean Fir - Day 213 An eye-catching conifer in the Dwarf Conifer Garden.


Day 212 - Delicate

Gardenia - Day 212Gardenia - Day 212 A Gardenia in bloom in the Semitropical Greenhouse.  The smell of these flowers is divine!


Day 211 - Golden Grass in the Sunshine

Golden Grasses - Day 211Golden Grasses - Day 211 Today it reached into the 50's and I headed to the Garden for a long walk to soak up some sun and get some exercise. I was dodging mud puddles as all the snow is melting but it was so wonderful to be outside.  I thought this was a fitting image for today - the sun illuminating the grasses on Evening Island.


Day 210 - Little Stars

Little Stars - Day 210Little Stars - Day 210 I have posted the Star of Bethlehem flower on a previous day but I have gone back to photograph this lovely plant many times.  I just love the way this shot shows the perfect symmetry of the petals and stamens. 


Day 209 - Leaves of the Purple Beech Tree

Purple Beech Leaves - Day 209Purple Beech Leaves - Day 209 Today I was starved for some exercise and fresh air, especially after all the delicious food we've been cooking at our house for the holidays!  The temperature pulled up into the low 30's and it was very comfortable for a long walk at the Garden.  The purple beech keeps its leaves through the winter and I was absolutely mesmerized by the beauty of the leaves as they shimmered in the late afternoon sun and danced with the wind.  I decided the best way to capture the sight was to focus on the edge of the leaf and let the rest fall out of focus.



Day 208 - Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas - Day 208Merry Christmas - Day 208


Day 207 - Perfect Patterns

Perfect Patterns - Day 207Perfect Patterns - Day 207


Day 206 - Petals

Petals - Day 206Petals - Day 206

Day 205 - Poinsettia Textures

Poinsettia - Day 205Poinsettia - Day 205 I was never that enthralled with poinsettias until I started photographing them last year at the holidays.  I became fascinated with all the color variations and the texture of the bracts (leaves).  This poinsettia was taken at the Wonderland Express exhibit at CBG, which is filled with all sorts of beautiful poinsettias.


Day 204 - A Burst of Red

Burst of Red - Day 204Burst of Red - Day 204 Another fun day of photographing at home with my store-bought bouquet.  This time I pulled out a red Gerbera Daisy.  What's fun is that photographing at home allows you to move the flower around and play with the light more.  I love the way the window light from the right brings out the velvety texture of the petals on the left. Although I prefer to be outdoors photographing flowers in their natural setting, it's just not possible in Chicago in winter. This provides a nice alternative for us passionate flower photographers in the midst of winter. 


Day 203 - A bit of Sunshine
Sunshine - Day 203Sunshine - Day 203

A little sunshine on a rainy, dreary day.  I bought a bouquet of flowers at Trader Joe's today and pulled out this sunny Gerbera Daisy from the bouquet to photograph.  I set up a little studio with natural light coming from the window and a black backdrop.  Fun!...this just might help me make it through the long winter.


Day 202 - A Peek Inside the Tiny Flower of the Echeveria

A Peek Inside - Day 202A Peek Inside - Day 202

Day 201 - Flowering Bush Coleus

Coleus - Day 201Coleus - Day 201 Part of the holiday displays in the Semitropical Greenhouse.


Day 200 - Prickly Cactus

Cactus - Day 200Cactus - Day 200 After a long and beautiful walk in the snow at the Garden I ended up in the Greenhouses to warm up for a bit.  Another prickly cactus in the Arid Greenhouse caught my eye.  There seem to be endless subjects to photograph there.


Day 199 - Necklace Vine
Necklace Vine - Day 199Necklace Vine - Day 199

Love this unusual succulent in the Arid Greenhouse.


Day 198 - Blood Red

Blood Red - Day 198Blood Red - Day 198 A Caladium leaf at the Butterfly House in St. Louis.  I didn't realize that Caladium had so many variations and patterns.  I photographed a different variation of Caladium back on day 104.  


Day 197 - Soft Beauty

Soft Beauty - Day 197Soft Beauty - Day 197 Another tropical beauty from St. Louis Butterfly House.  (Obviously, I am using several photos from the same day shoot at the Butterfly House.  I was unable to shoot each day while away, as I normally try to do, because of graduation festivities, family time, ice and snow storm, etc.)


Day 196 - Hibiscus at St. Louis Butterfly House

Hibiscus - Day 196Hibiscus - Day 196 Butterflies are not the only beautiful things at the St. Louis Butterfly House! The orchids and tropical flowers are gorgeous at this exhibit.


Day 195 - Blue Clipper - St. Louis Butterfly House

Blue Clipper - Day 195Blue Clipper - Day 195 I've been away for a few days attending my daughter's nursing school graduation in Missouri.  On my way home today I stopped at one of my favorite places - the St. Louis Butterfly House, part of the Missouri Botanical Garden.  What a treat to be among the butterflies despite the snow on the ground and freezing temps outside!  It was a sauna inside the tropical glass enclosure.  I'll get caught up on missed posts tomorrow but for now enjoy this Blue Clipper, one of many types of butterflies in the Butterfly House. 


Day 194 - 'Dancing Snow' Hydrangea

Dancing Snow - Day 194Dancing Snow - Day 194 This is a compact dwarf hybrid hydrangea with star-shaped double blooms.  It is also known as 'Wedding Gown' Hydrangea. Another beautiful addition to the holidays flowers in the Semitropical Greenhouse.  I was fascinated with the touch of blue in the center of many of the flowers.


Day 193 - Star of Bethlehem
Star of Bethlehem - Day 193Star of Bethlehem - Day 193

You can't miss these stunning plants that are part of the holiday plantings in the Semitropical Greenhouse.  They line the walkway all throughout the greenhouse - perfect little star-shaped beauties.


Day 192 - Snow on Hawthorn Berries

Snowy Day - Day 192Snowy Day - Day 192 A Washington Hawthorn in the Native Plant Garden.  We got a nice snow yesterday but it was bitterly cold today even with the sun shining.  I attempted a short walk but didn't last too long.  Brrrrrrrr!


Day 191 - Silver Jade Plant

Silver Jade Plant - Day 191Silver Jade Plant - Day 191

It's amazing what a macro lens can help you see.  I did not even notice the tiny dot pattern on the edges of the silver jade plant in the Arid Greenhouse when I shot this.  I was more focused on the vibrant colors of the plant's edge. When I got it up on my computer screen I was delighted to see the interesting pattern that popped out at me!


Day 190 - Poinsettia

Poinsettia - Day 190Poinsettia - Day 190 Part of the holiday display in the Tropical Greenhouse. 


Day 189 - Backlit Palm Leaf


Palm Leaf - Day 189Palm Leaf - Day 189


Day 188 - Amaryllis Patterns

Amaryllis Patterns - Day 188Amaryllis Patterns - Day 188 Pattern on the outer petal of an Amalfi Amaryllis.  I keep going back to the Semitropical green house to photograph the beautiful holiday displays of amaryllis.  Check out my lastest blog post for more photos of these beautiful flowers. 


Day 187 - Tiny Flower of the Jade Plant

Jade Flower - Day 187Jade Flower - Day 187 Foggy, wet, grey day.  Thank goodness for those greenhouses!


Day 186 - Poinsettia Leaf

Poinsettia Leaf - Day 186Poinsettia Leaf - Day 186


Day 185 - Repeating Patterns

Agave - Day 185Agave - Day 185 I don't know the name of this succulent in the Arid Greenhouse but will stop by the Garden Plant Info desk to find out. I love the lines/patterns of this plant.  If nothing else, this project has made me fall in love with the Arid Greenhouse and all its fascinating plants. (p.s. I was later able to identify this plant as a Queen Victoria Agave).


Day 184 - Kalanchoe Blossfeldiana

Kalanchoe - Day 184Kalanchoe - Day 184 A dainty holiday flower in the Arid Greenhouse.


Day 183 - Crabapple Berries

Crabapple Berries - Day 183Crabapple Berries - Day 183 In the spring the crabapple trees bless us with beautiful flowers but in the late fall and winter they provide color and food for the birds.  Today marks the half way point in this project.  Time is flying by and I continue to enjoy and learn from this daily exercise.


Day 182 - Amalfi Amaryllis

Amaryllis - Day 182Amaryllis - Day 182 The Semi-Tropical Greenhouse is filled with displays of these beautiful pink Amalfi Amaryllis for the holidays.


Day 181 - Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving Day - Day 181Thanksgiving Day - Day 181 May your day be filled with family, friends, food and fun!  I am thankful for all the many blessings in my life and for all the wonderful people I have met through my photography. 


Day 180 - Cactus Patterns

Cactus - Day 180Cactus - Day 180


Day 179 - Crown of Thorns

Crown of Thorns - Day 179Crown of Thorns - Day 179 Another beauty in the Arid Greenhouse.  The Crown of Thorns belongs to the same genus as poinsettias.  The yellow cyathia (the actual flower) is enclosed by reddish/pink bracts (leaves).


Day 178 - Ready or Not, Here I Come

Royal Paintbrush - Day 178Royal Paintbrush - Day 178 I've gone back several times to see the Royal Paintbrush plant I photographed last week to see if they had opened more. They are a little more open than they were last week but I was particularly fascinated with this one.  It looks like a face with hands covering the eyes as if playing hide and seek!


Day 177 - Tree Trunk Pattern

Tree Trunk Pattern - Day 177Tree Trunk Pattern - Day 177 Thanks to my daughter for pointing out this interesting texture/pattern in the Tropical Greenhouse.


Day 176 - More sticky situations

Agave - Day 176Agave - Day 176

I continue to be amazed at how much there is to discover in the Arid Greenhouse.  Every time I stop in, I find many new things that catch my eye. It is full of patterns and textures.


Day 175 - Ouch!

Cactus - Day 175Cactus - Day 175 This cactus looks like it could do some damage.


Day 174 - Chinese Astilbe

Chinese Astilbe - Day 174Chinese Astilbe - Day 174 Another plant that adds color and texture to the winter landscape.


Day 173 - Shrubby Whitevein

Shrubby Whitevein - Day 173Shrubby Whitevein - Day 173 A colorful leaf in the Tropical Greenhouse.


Day 172 - Ruffles

Ruffles - Day 172Ruffles - Day 172


Day 171 - Hydrangea

Hydrangea - Day 171Hydrangea - Day 171 Hydrangeas are beautiful in summer but I especially love the way they look in fall and winter.  I always leave mine up all winter to add some texture and interest to my Garden in the winter.  Glad to see that CBG leaves their many hydrangeas in place as well.  These are in the English Walled Garden.


Day 170 - Curving Lines of the Cactus

Wavy - Day 170Wavy - Day 170

Day 169 - Faded Beauty

Faded Beauty - Day 169Faded Beauty - Day 169 A quick walk before the rain started. I found this faded beauty still lingering in the Rose Garden.


Day 168 - Royal Paint Brush

Royal Paint Brush - Day 168Royal Paint Brush - Day 168 Look what's blooming in the Arid Greenhouse!  I've been watching this plant for a couple of days as it slowly begins to open.  Will definitely be back to capture it fully open.


Day 167 - Tiny Cactus Flower - 'Whitey' Cactus

Cactus Flower - Day 167Cactus Flower - Day 167


Day 166 - 'White Heart' Flamingo Flower

'White Heart' Flamingo Flower - Day 166'White Heart' Flamingo Flower - Day 166 Another day in the Greenhouses - this time the Tropical Greenhouse (yes, the one where your camera lens always fogs up, but at least it's warm inside). I was pretty excited when I realized what a cool pattern this Flamingo Flower had on its spadex (the purple spike) and I love the leathery texture and curved lines of the spathe.


Day 165 - Winter is Upon Us

First Show - Day 165First Show - Day 165 Yesterday afternoon we got our first snow of the winter and it was enough to cover the ground and stick around for a day.  I took a nice walk at the Garden today - the sun was shining but it was crisp and cold and the snow had not melted in many areas.  Not sure I'm ready for this but here we go...long winter ahead!  Good thing I got my bulbs planted and gardens prepared for winter.


Day 164 - A Thorny Situation

Thorny Situation - Day 164Thorny Situation - Day 164 Ouch!  An artichoke agave in the Arid Greenhouse.


Day 163 - Coneflower Pods

Coneflowers - Day 163Coneflowers - Day 163 The purple petals of my coneflowers have long ago fallen off but I leave the seed pods in the garden through the winter to provide food for the birds.


Day 162 - Echeveria
Echeveria - Day 162Echeveria - Day 162

I know I should be saving the greenhouses for those frigid winter days but I'm kind of hooked on photographing succulents.  I find something new every time I'm there. Unlike "fuzzy wuzzy" of a few days back, this echeveria has a very smooth and shiny leaf.

Day 161 - Fiery Spike

Fiery Spike - Day 161Fiery Spike - Day 161 Appropriate name for this stunning plant blooming in the Tropical Greenhouse.


Day 160 - Tree with a Personality

Pine - Day 160Pine - Day 160 You can't miss this one when you walk along the path in the Japanese Garden.  This tree has stories to tell.


Day 159 - Fuzzy Wuzzy

Fuzzy Wuzzy - Day 159Fuzzy Wuzzy - Day 159 This has to be my favorite texture so far!  A form of very fuzzy echeveria in the Arid Greenhouse.  This plant is low to the ground so you don't see its fuzziness until you get down closer.  It was a rainy, cold day outside but the greenhouses were warm and dry.


Day 158 - Patterns of a Pine Cone

Pine Cone - Day 158Pine Cone - Day 158


Day 157 - Japanese Maple

Japanese Maple - Day 157Japanese Maple - Day 157 The leaves of my favorite maple in the Japanese Garden finally turned red!


Day 156 - Thread Leaf Agave

Thread Leaf Agave - Day 156Thread Leaf Agave - Day 156 Fascinating agave in the Arid Greenhouse.  Can't believe I had never noticed this plant before!


Day 155 - Staghorn Sumac

Staghorn Sumac - Day 155Staghorn Sumac - Day 155 In the Native Plant Garden.  The colors at CBG right now are breathtaking! Don't wait long - they'll be gone before you know it!


Day 154 - Maple Leaf Patterns

Maple Leaf Patterns - Day 154Maple Leaf Patterns - Day 154 A walk today in Somme Woods.


Day 153 - Spider Mum

Spider Mum - Day 153Spider Mum - Day 153 A rainy Halloween but there are always things to photograph indoors.  This spider mum was part of a beautiful display in Regenstein Center.


Day 152 - Pompom Garden Mums

Mum - Day 152Mum - Day 152 Still going strong, these mums in the English Walled Garden are one of only a few blooms left.


Day 151 - Grand Lady With Her Fur

Anemone - Day 151Anemone - Day 151 Who knew I'd start being fascinated with dying flowers.  The crazy good thing about this project is that it helps me to look at things I never looked at before. A year ago I would have walked right past these flowers, not thinking them a photograph-worthy subject.  These flowers, like dying people, have stories to share before they go.  This grand lady (who may just be the beautiful white anemone I photographed for my post on day 131) seems to be wrapping her fur around her neck to prepare for winter.  I never noticed that the anemones have such a furry textured petal underneath.  


Day 150 - Seed Clusters of the Blackberry Lily Plant

Blackberry Lily Berry - Day 150Blackberry Lily Berry - Day 150 I get it!  Back on day 58 of this project I posted a photo of a blackberry lily, a small leopard-patterned lily I found in the Dwarf Conifer Garden in the summer. I thought the name must have come from the deep reddish-purple color of the patterns on the lily, but now I see that the plant produces a beautiful seed cluster in the fall. After the flowers fall off, the plant produces a seed pod that, when ripe, opens to reveal a cluster of blackberry-like berries. 


Day 149 - Last Dance

Last Dance - Day 149Last Dance - Day 149


Day 148 - Fernleaf Maple

Fernleaf Maple - Day 148Fernleaf Maple - Day 148 So far there have not been an abundance of colorful leaves to photograph this fall, but this fernleaf maple in the Japanese Garden sure has a colorful stem and I love the fan-like pattern of the leaves.


Day 147 - Cactus Patterns

Cactus Pattern - Day 147Cactus Pattern - Day 147


Day 146 - Dainty Flowers

Dainty Flower - Day 146Dainty Flower - Day 146 I was captivated by the beauty of these dainty little flowers and the way they draped over the succulent.  I will return to the Arid Greenhouse to find out the plant's name.


Day 145 - Where Have All the Flowers Gone?

The End - Day 145The End - Day 145 I knew the day would come but it was still a sad sight for me.  The frost and cold temps of last night meant the end of the flowers.  I walked from garden to garden -  the dahlias, the zinnias, so many of the remaining flowers were limp and brown. So sad!


Day 144 - Golden Eye Beggar's Tick

Golden Eyes - Day 144Golden Eyes - Day 144 A sweet little aster in the Daisy Garden of the English Walled Garden.  I'm so drawn to the simple pattern of this flower.


Day 143 - Jindai Tatarian Aster

Asters - Day 143Asters - Day 143 Asters are another sign of fall and they are all over the Garden in many different varieties.  I especially love these Jindai Tatarian asters growing on Evening Island near the bridge to the Science Center.  They are at least 4 feet tall. Today was the first day I donned my winter coat, a hat and mittens at the Garden.  It was chilly and quite windy today!


Day 142 - Tiny Flower

Tiny Flower - Day 142Tiny Flower - Day 142 Tiny flower of a succulent in the Arid Greenhouse.


Day 141 - Getting ready for Halloween

Pumpkin Time - Day 141Pumpkin Time - Day 141 ...and have you bought your Halloween candy yet?


Day 140 - Another Day in the Woods

McDonald Woods - Day 140McDonald Woods - Day 140 Today friend Maria and I spent time in search of fall color, interesting fungus and all sorts of signs of fall in McDonald Woods at CBG.  We noticed many trees that were cut down, most likely ash trees damaged by emerald ash borer.  I suspect this damage is the work of the emerald ash borer larvae that tunnel their way up and down the trunk eating between the bark and sapwood.  This damages the tree's ability to take in water and nutrients, eventually killing the tree.  Interesting serpentine patterns but such a sad fate for so many of our local trees.


Day 139 - Fungus on a Fallen Tree

Fungus - Day 139Fungus - Day 139 Call me weird but I'm always scouting out the fungus in the woods.  This was particularly colorful and interesting.


Day 138 - A Walk in Harm's Woods

Maple Leaf - Day 138Maple Leaf - Day 138 Today Maria and I took a walk in Harm's Woods. It was a chilly day but at least the rain stayed away.  The colors are slowly but surely changing and it was fun to explore the woods and photograph the emerging colors.  I loved the contrast between the decaying fallen tree trunk and the vibrant maple leaf.


Day 137 - 'Scarlet Belle' Pitcher Plant

Pitcher Plant - Day 137Pitcher Plant - Day 137 Rainy, rainy day here so I headed to the greenhouses to photograph.  This colorful patterned pitcher plant is in the Semi-Tropical Greenhouse.  Pitcher plants, like venus fly traps, are carnivorous plants that trap unsuspecting insects that come their way.


Day 136 - Dahlias Are Still in Bloom

Dahlia - Day 136Dahlia - Day 136 As long as the dahlias are still in bloom and beautiful as ever, I'm going to keep photographing them.  The early morning dew with our chilly mornings has made them irresistible.


Day 135 - Orchid at the Illinois Orchid Show

Orchid - Day 135Orchid - Day 135 This weekend the Illinois Orchid Show was going on at CBG and they allowed photographers to come in this morning to photograph the orchids before they opened to the public.  I have never been a fan of photographing orchids because the lighting is often difficult indoors but I thought I'd give it a try and it turned out to be fun.  I was fascinated by the vibrant colors and velvety texture of this particular orchid.  Thanks to my photo friend, Vandana, who drove all the way from Bloomington to photograph at the Garden with me this weekend.  We had a great time!


Day 134 - Winterberry

Winterberry - Day 134Winterberry - Day 134 Spent a wonderful day at Anderson Japanese Gardens in Rockford, a treat well-worth the drive and early morning rising to get there by 8:00 a.m.  The field trip was sponsored by the Morton Arboretum and included a guided tour through the gardens that provided wonderful details about the history and reasons behind the designs of the garden.   Long after the leaves have fallen off the winterberry tree the bright red berries remain to provide food for wildlife in the winter.


Day 133 - Ozawa Onion

Ozawa Onion - Day 133Ozawa Onion - Day 133 A  fall flowering bulb in the allium family.   


Day 132 - Mars Dahlia

Mars Dahlia - Day 132Mars Dahlia - Day 132 While many flowers are beginning to wither, the Mars Dahlias are abundant and at their best in the Daisy Garden within the English Walled Garden.  They are a favorite flower of mine - the scarlet velvet-like petals that curl in at the tips to give it a star pattern, the smaller inner petals nestled within the larger petals and the brilliant yellow of the center.


Day 131 - White Japanese Anemone

White Anemone - Day 131White Anemone - Day 131 Such simple but beautiful flowers, Japanese Anemones are blooming all over the Garden right now.  I found these delicate white ones in the Enabling Garden.  I love the soft texture of the petals.


Day 130 Maple Leaf

Maple Leaf - Day 130Maple Leaf - Day 130


Day 129 - Monarch in the Circle Garden

Monarch - Day 129Monarch - Day 129 I thought the butterflies were all gone.  I hadn't seen one in over a week.  I was passing through the Circle Garden late this afternoon and spotted a couple of monarchs feeding on the zinnias and dahlias.  Well, of course I had to stay awhile and photograph them...and, of course I had to post one!


Day 128 - Prairie Flame Shining Sumac

Sumac - Day 128Sumac - Day 128 This would have been easy to miss.  Sumac is not a particularly "pretty" tree, but that pop of red drew me closer and just look at how beautiful the colors and patterns are on the leaves up close!


Day 127 - It's Pumpkin Time!

Pumpkins - Day 127Pumpkins - Day 127 Check out the pile of pumpkins and gourds at CBG!


Day 126 - Swiss Chard, Take Two

Swiss Chard - Day 126Swiss Chard - Day 126 I know I posted a photo of Swiss Chard several weeks ago but I spent some time in the Fruit and Vegetable Garden today and I'm just so drawn to the patterns and colors. It seems to be growing everywhere along with kale and cabbage. The Fruit and Vegetable Garden is literally a feast for the eyes right now and don't miss the giant pumpkins - they were just put into place today!


Day 125 - Blue Potato Vine
Blue Potato Vine - Day 125Blue Potato Vine - Day 125

It's not a potato plant, although a cousin of the tuberous potato - just a plant with beautifully-patterned petals and vibrant colors.  It certainly caught my eye in the Heritage Garden.


Day 124 - Small White Asters

Small White Aster - Day 124Small White Aster - Day 124 I used to walk right by the Native Plant Garden at CBG and didn't fully appreciate the beauty of this garden until a year ago.  After spending the better part of a year photographing the plants in that garden for the cell phone app project, I now have a deeper appreciation and awareness of what grows in there in each season of the year. These tiny white asters are one of the plants blooming in that garden right now - another example of a plant that needs to be appreciated up close.  It's easy to miss this tiny beauty.


Day 123 - Softness

Dahlia - Day 123Dahlia - Day 123 For the past 6 months I have been experimenting more and more with shooting nature in a dreamy, soft-focus, wide aperture kind of way.  It is a way of shooting that allows more creativity and it is very freeing. For this project I have tended to shoot my subjects so that everything is very sharp and the entire image is in focus, feeling that it better conveys the patterns and textures I am presenting.  Every once in awhile I need to shake myself out of that and shoot very soft. Yesterday and today I have been on a "dahlia mission" because even though they are still blooming and beautiful at the Garden, they will not be around much longer.  The dahlia is a flower that is a wonderful subject for softer focus; it really conveys the essence of the flower.  This summer I have greatly enjoyed the wealth of gorgeous dahlias at the Garden.


Day 122 - Paperbark Maple

Paper Bark Maple- Day 122Paper Bark Maple- Day 122 Today I was exploring the Japanese Garden for some new ideas for this project and remembered one of my absolute favorite trees in that area - the Paperbark Maple.  Tree bark offers us some of the most interesting textures and patterns in nature. This bark is so unique with it's thin papery layers and vibrant colors.

Day 121 - Swirling

Swirls - Day 121Swirls - Day 121 Mums everywhere! Whirling, twirling, swirling color!


Day 120 - Colorful Kale

Cabbage - Day 120Cabbage - Day 120 A colorful addition to the fall display in the Sensory Garden.


Day 119 - Autumn Crocus

Fall Crocus - Day 119Fall Crocus - Day 119 In the spring the appearance of crocuses, one of the first flowers to bloom, means that spring has finally arrived.  In the fall they are a reminder that winter is not far off. Even though commonly known as Autumn Crocuses these fall-blooming corms are not really crocus but are called Colchicum.  I have passed this bed of flowers nestled amidst the ground cover at the north end of the Bulb Garden all week.  Today I finally knelt down to take a closer look.  I was stunned to see the beautiful checkerboard-like patterns on the petals of this delicate flower. They are gorgeous indeed!



Day 118 - Last Rose of Summer

Rose - Day 118Rose - Day 118

Not many roses left at the Garden.  I'm lamenting the fact that I didn't shoot many roses this summer.  Ah well, there is always next year!



Day 117 - Green Giant Arborvitae

Arborvitae - Day 117Arborvitae - Day 117 I found this towering arborvitae in the Rose Garden today.  It is an evergreen that is part of the cypress family and is commonly used in yards as a privacy screen.  Although the tree is not particularly interesting to photograph from afar, I find the structure and vibrant green of the leaves with the reddish color of the limbs so fascinating and beautiful up close.

To visit the first part of this 365 project, days 1 - 116, please follow this link: