Natural confusion…


Late autumn bloom of a usually spring blooming tree. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

The rest of Chicago is reacting “properly” to the arriving chills of freezing temperatures while parts of this tree is confused. Most of the SPRING flowering tree is dormant, as is proper for November. But confused by our unusually long, warm days of autumn this year some of it’s branches believe springtime is on the horizon. It is not unusual for perennial plants to have a second, cool season bloom period; but this is the first time I’ve witnessed a second season bloom of a tree.

Sweet is in the eyes of the beholder…


Here are a few different views of downtown Chicago, this time from South Pond in Lincoln Park. The naturalized prairie grasses are prominent in the scene. After a leisurely walk through the park we lunched at the delicious Café Brauer; this time dining was a bit of a challenge. This time of year, worker bees are instinctively anxious to gather as much energy (sugar/nectar) and protein (pollen) as possible to store for the coming winter months. So, as my eyes admired the sweet view from our table, they were eyeing my lunch. And typical of me, I watched with love and allowed them to feast in between my bites and sips.

Warning: If you aren’t fond of bees then don’t look at last two images!

View of downtown Chicago and South Pond in Lincoln Park. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

View of South Pond and Chicago from Cafe Brauer. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Worker bee gathering sweetness from my jam. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Wine and cocktails were not off limits for the bees, much to the dismay of the diners. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

For more on bee behavior during the autumn:
https://phys.org/news/2012-10-bees-wasps-busy-autumn.html

A different naked lady…


My southern sisters are proud of their Naked Ladies (Amaryllis Belladonna), while here in Chicago the Autumn Crocus (Colchicum autumnale) is our “Naked Lady”. Both gained their nickname because when the flowers are in bloom their leaves already have become dormant, so are no longer present. These bulb beauties were at Lincoln Park Zoo several weeks ago and drew attention from the Lion Den.

Close up of sunlit petals. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Vibrant autumn color. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Prolific blooms. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Garden bouquet of flowering fall bulbs. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Painted lady…


Painted Lady butterfly on end of fall bloom. Fading Hosta leaves set the background. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Outer markings of the Painted Lady butterfly are similar to inner patterning; which is not always true of butterflies. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Hardy…


Not all wildlife migrates south for the winter. Like people, some species acclimate to the many Midwest climate changes during the year. Here are some native Northerners enjoying the cooler days of autumn in Chicago.

The hardiest Heron do not migrate to Florida for the winter but remain at Lincoln Park’s assorted ponds. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Always on public display, grooming is never private. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Squirrels squirreling away nuts is easily witnessed this time of year in preparation for winter’s long season. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

The Grey Squirrel is a personal favorite on my walks though parks. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Friends in the pond community. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

More grooming, this time by a duck. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Spring is not the only time of birth for the turtles of South Pond in Lincoln Park. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Deceptive appearance…


With sufficient concealment the Sun’s arrival through the cloud covered sky resembles the Moon. Dense cloud cover allowed me to aim my camera directly at the Sun as it appeared to weave in and out of the rapid moving clouds. Unswerving witness to nature’s forte.

Morning sun revealing itself through the moving clouds. Copyright 2017, Pamela Breitberg

Sun rising higher in sky has enough energy to be seen behind dark storm clouds. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg