Along Sheridan Road in Rogers Park

If not for the cars way in the background, this image could have been taken over fifty years ago…

Vinery and Wrought Iron

Vinery and Wrought Iron

…but it’s from just the other day!

Too bad there was no SNOW!

Still Life, with Plywood

I 'played a lot with this image, continually darkening it and giving it more contrast...I even re-worked it right before this post, so now I'm satisfied.

I ‘played a lot with this image, continually darkening it and giving it more contrast…I even re-worked it right before this post, so now I’m satisfied.

Still Life with Plywood-Ink Outlines

Last week, when I began on this image, I took it into Photoshop (TM) Brush Strokes Filter (among others!), used Ink Outlines and came up with this result, which I felt conveyed more of a ramshackle, abandoned feeling.  The building houses the Leone Beach Junior Lifeguards, who work the many beaches in this northernmost neighborhood of Chicago, and is ‘abandoned’ until the swimming season begins again on Memorial day.

I also wanted to see what it would look like with the ‘Snow’ app, as we haven’t had snow lately and none is predicted for the coming week…I sure hope to photograph some REAL snow, soon!

I don’t know this man…

…yet I feel he’s a bit ‘loopy’, as are others who use noisy, gas-powered leaf blowers.  Just look at his face:

Having one heck of a crazy time, isn’t he?

He was rather jerky in his movements, as if he was stalking and attacking the enemy!  When he finally finished with the forty feet or so in front of this building, he moved quickly to the side street and kept going…the noise was incredibly loud!  Here’s what he left after all the effort:

A Street Full of Leaves!

Now, although Chicago’s nickname is “The Windy City”, that refers to politicians (UGH!).  But, as the lake is a mere block to the east, and winds frequently blow in from the east and northeast, these leaves will just end up back where they started from…on his sidewalk!  All that effort for NOTHING!

It would be better to do this, as suggested by

Using Leaves for Composting

The leaves of one large shade tree can be worth as much as $50 of plant food and humus. Pound for pound, the leaves of most trees contain twice as many minerals as manure. For example, the mineral content of a sugar maple leaf is over five percent, while even common pine needles have 2.5 percent of their weight in calcium, magnesium, nitrogen and phosphorus, plus other trace elements.

Since most trees are deep-rooted, they absorb minerals from deep in the soil and a good portion of these minerals go into the leaves. See the accompanying chart for an analysis of the nutrient elements in fallen leaves.

Actually, these multi-colored gifts from above are most valuable for the large amounts of fibrous organic matter they supply. Their humus-building qualities mean improved structure for all soil types. They aerate heavy clay soils, prevent sandy soils from drying out too fast, soak up rain and check evaporation.

A lawn sweeper is a good machine to use for collecting leaves. Using a sweeper is much faster than hand raking, and a better picking-up job is done. Neighbors will be happy to have you sweep up their leaves—and you will add to your supply of leaves.

Click the link above to read more composting info.

Cabbage and Kale and Color, oh, my!

These were growing in the raised beds in front of the The Breakers on Sheridan Road in the Edgewater Glen neighborhood.  Aren’t they lovely, and so suited to the wonderful hues of Autumn?

Ornamental Cabbage-1

Ornamental Kale

Ornamental Cabbage-2

Autumn at the shore…

…from a higher vantage point!

Yesterday was a gorgeous November Sunday, with temps around 45 degrees (F.) and a not-quite-10 mph wind blowing over a cooling Lake Michigan.

During my walk over, I decided I was bored photographing the shore from ground level, so I carefully climbed some twenty-odd steps up the concrete bleachers which overlook a baseball diamond and a football field.  These images have a bit of that perspective…but I would have loved if the bleachers were twice as high!

Almost-bare branches, Lake Michigan, and an empty playlot

More bare branches along Lake Michigan

From an older garden…

…near the Lake Michigan shore.  The only building at this location which may have had a garden was a small lighthouse, which was demolished many decades ago.

Closed Morning Glory, Sweet Alyssum and Fallen Leaves

The Sweet Alyssum is a bit old-fashioned, as the same plant contains both purple and white flowers.

Sweet Alyssum