Sunday, April 24, 2011

Morton Arboretum

I grew up visiting the Morton Arboretum regularly.  My mom and I would go, almost weekly, for tea in the Gingko Room followed by a walk on some of our favorite trails.  It is through these ramblings that I developed a genuine interest in nature and plants.  Rambling along my mom would stop and point out various trees and flowers, offering up facts and stories.  Later in life, I became that person that would walk and point out what I saw.  I took an interest in what was going on in my neighbors garden or down the street.

Today I am surprised at the general lack of knowledge society has regarding nature.  I assumed everyone grew up knowing the difference between annuals and perennials, marveling at morning glories as they opened to the sun and helping to gather a bumper crop from the family garden.  I may not have known how lucky I was then, but I certainly do now.

On my last visit home, my mom and checked out some or our favorite old haunts at the Morton Arboretum.  I was pleased to see the center has expanded and now included a full time children's garden and maze, which didn't exist 10 years ago.  Through these efforts, children have the opportunity to learn and grow with nature.

A yarn covered tree added excitement to the Children's garden.  Throughout a short walk around, I spotted little doilies randomly placed on other trees and shrubs, a fun activity even for adults.

The Morton Arboretum Prairie.

Bright green moss.  Eye candy for an eye used to seeing shades of brown and gold.

Buds beginning to form on trees.

Daffodil Fields.

In the Spruce Forest.  Even on the sunniest of days, this patch of Spruces offer a reprieve to the heat.  Entering into the grove is unexplainably nostalgic and magical.

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