Monday, October 5, 2015

Arthur Siegel and Ellen Soffer

My long-standing friend, Ellen Soffer, recently sent me this photo of my dad's from The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Below, you can see it and its caption. As well, an image from a painting (my first art purchase)I bought from Ellen in 1984. For several years in the 80s, wherever I hung that painting: that was home. Check out her website; Ellen is the real deal.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

John Greenlee & Jeff Epping at Intrinsic

One of the joys and rewards of working in the industry is learning from global experts.
Plant people are generally grounded & passionate.
They know that for plants to survive, we must not only share them, but pass along knowledge, so they are also usually generous.
Yesterday, I was fortunate to hear/see presentations by 
John Greenlee of Greenlee & Associates (Meadows & Grasses)
Jeff Epping, Director of Horticulture at Olbrich Botanical Gardens
(Meadows & Gravel Gardens)
at Intrinsic Perennial Gardens run by Brent Horvath.
By the time John gave a tour of the garden (below) that he had just put together,
Jeff had already left to drive back to Madison (so no pix of him).
I was inspired by their commitment to sustainability,
their practical advice
and their aesthetic concepts.

It was quite a dramatic weather day with the types of
clouds we witness in The Midwest.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Insects #2: Not good eyes: just enlarged image

For all of you who wrote me to comment on my good eyesight: In the previous post (Insects), I didn't see the insects when I photographed them. It wasn't until I saw the photo enlarged on my computer that I noticed the insects in addition to the plants.
Why did I use this photo in today's post? Because it shows another example of the virtue of the camera (mine is just iPhone these days): I was photographing this downspout at a client's while measuring for a basemap, but it wasn't until I saw the image later that I "saw" the nice red plant hoop.

Yippee! We are finally starting to get a little rain...we need it for the plants, of course. And, I love the fresh smell of the rain and the sound of car tires rolling through puddles.

Sunday, September 6, 2015


It wasn't until today, because I had this date's photos on my screen saver, that I noticed these two insects on the Hibiscus August 17th. Can you ID them? Especially the blue and red one? The other looks aphid-like.

Friday, September 4, 2015

The Little Petunia That Could...

Plants do many things, including Surprise, Delight and Inspire...
Enjoy Labor Day weekend in the context of Gratitude.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

A Smart, Sustainable Green Wall

Green Walls are very hip...and expensive. Not to mention that they are very difficult to sustain outside in our climate. Whatever zone Chicago is called these days, we still can get the deep cold with no snow cover and that does in a lot of plants. Every year, there is a plant that suffers from stress: cold, hot, dry, wet, insect, disease or human mistreatment; every year, some plant doesn't make it. This past winter, both mature and newer Harry's Walking Stick all seemed to perish.
So, why not have this dried Green Wall to lift your spirits? I do not know the price, but if you treat it as a good piece of art, you will have your money's worth.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Cultivate Urban Rainforest & Gallery

Here are a few random literal/visual/otherwise reflections on a vibrant addition to our local Evanston spaces. Cultivate Urban Rainforest & Gallery.

What a delight to experience others creating an environment that is both stimulating and calming with plants, art and "objets." I love how they use the back of this expensive piece of furniture for a blackboard (with that variegated Iris to pop the black): very out-of-the-box.

Reflecting my predilections, the place shows off carnivorous plants, ferns and succulents to their advantages (light conditions mid-day made photographing "interesting"). The owner, Louise Rosenberg, "founded Cultivate on the belief that plants, art and community create a wonderful synergy that is self-sustaining." (Quote from Magic-on-Main 7/27 blog post.) I felt the manifestation!

While Cultivate works as an integrated creation, I was engaged by exploring so many vignettes that also work independently. There is also a lively extension of the space on the back porch. No pix, but I did put my money where my mouth is and support locally when I bought a vintage, white-painted, metal hanging basket for 4-season interest for my dark, covered, north-facing back porch.
Below, you can see one of the otherworldly light reflections.