One area of the Chicago Botanic Garden I had never explored before is McDonald Woods, the wooded area at the eastern borders of the Garden. Last week Chris Smith and I met at the Garden very early on one of our 80 degree days to spend some time exploring the woods and search for wildflowers. McDonald Woods is a 100 acre remnant of what used to be a much larger oak woodland that covered this area 100 years ago. The Garden is working to restore the woods to its presettlement state. It is home to a vast number of animals, insects, birds and native plants. May is the perfect time to see wildflowers in the woods, as they bloom while the sun can still reach them and fade as the trees in the woods come to full leaf and blot out the sun.
White trout lily
Capturing the feel of the woods in bloom with a panning shot.
Another wooded area of the Garden that I love and visit almost every time I go to the Garden is the Sensory Garden Woods. It is full of wildflowers now but my favorite spring bloom in these woods is the bleeding heart at the north end of the woods.
This year I enjoyed photographing the marsh marigold blooming in the Sensory Garden Woods.