Anyone who knows me knows I'm passionate about capturing the world up-close, particularly flowers. You probably figured that out if you spent even five minutes on my website. Occasionally, however, I am overcome with the beauty of the landscapes at the Chicago Botanic Garden and I can't help myself. I have to capture the magic and make sure to pack my wide angle lens in my camera bag. This time in spring is one such time. The week when the hundreds of crabapples circling the Great Basin come into bloom in shades of pink, red and white is one of the most magical of weeks at the Garden. Walking through the entire Garden, especially circling the Great Basin brings magnificent views upon every turn.
The most magical view for me is the Lakeside Garden path; the arching crabapples make me feel like I have entered a magical fairyland. I always try to imagine how I would have loved it as a child.
This pot of glowing orange azeleas among the colorful crabapples is seen from the Enabling Garden terrace. This was one of my favorite views this past week.
What a beautiful place to sit and soak up the beauty of the Garden in spring! The smell is divine!
The tulips have since faded but this was the view of the Crescent Garden in previous weeks. How quickly spring has progressed. I can't believe there are only a few late-blooming tulip varieties left.
A walk to the Japanese Gardens is a must. The azaleas are in bloom right now and they are always a beautiful sight.
Another beautiful view with one of my favorite crabapples is in the Bulb Garden. It reminds me of a tree I often climbed in as a child, daydreaming for hours at a time and even bringing my lunch there and imaging it was my home, my kingdom. When it was fully leafed out no one could see me in the tree so I imaged it my secret hiding place. Of course, I'm sure the fact that my bicycle was on the ground beneath the tree gave my secret away. My love of nature has deep roots in my childhood, growing up in a small town surrounded by beautiful natural places to explore. I treasure that I had a lot of unstructured time to explore the world around me. I worry that children today aren't given enough time to daydream, to explore, to create. We all need to slow down and nurture those moments.
This is just a small sampling of the many beautiful views at the Garden in May. Soak it in because in a couple weeks the spring gardens will be pulled out to make way for the summer gardens. And don't forget that Butterflies and Blooms opens on May 28th. I'm excited to be back photographing the butterflies!