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Fall at the Lurie Garden

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Fall Millennium Park View at the Lurie Garden Chicago © Shawna Coronado.jpWhen starting my fall photography series on The Lurie Garden I expected to see a lot of brown; that singular moment of death at the end of the summer season where everything crumbles in the North and becomes mulch. Little did I know how wrong I would be. The Lurie Garden in autumn is on fire with color and wildlife possibilities.

Fall Coneflower Lurie Garden Chicago © Shawna Coronado.jpg

Fall Colors Lurie Garden Chicago © Shawna Coronado

Fall Art Institute Chicago © copyright Shawna CoronadoFall at The Lurie Garden holds a lot of surprises. When you walk through the garden in early morning it is surprisingly quiet even though the busy city streets are a few mere steps from anywhere within the garden. Trees, shrubs, and plants – oh so many astounding plants – reside in the garden beds and act as supreme sound absorbers. Insulating sound against the harsh cement world that resides outside of the gardens walkways is a strong part of what the plants do, but they also provide increased oxygen levels and beauty for passers-by.

Fall Path Lurie Garden Chicago © copyright Shawna CoronadoThe Lurie Garden offers more than simply plants in the fall. Below are several of the garden’s featured lectures in November. If you are in Chicago on November 19, definitely register for the below classes. I will be attending the daytime lectures and hope to see you there.

Lurie Garden//Fall 2015 Programs

Free Adult Workshop: Forest Ecology for Naturalists

Thursday, Nov. 19, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. – Join Guy Sternberg of Starhill Forest Arboretum of Illinois College as he presents the basics of forest ecology and how we can all help manage forests for natural values. You’ll learn about forest types and habitats, components of the forest, factors influencing forest composition, natural succession and cycles, goals of management, threats to forest ecosystems and the nature and value of urban and community forests in Illinois and other Midwest states. Pre-registration is required at

Free Adult Lecture: Artistic Morphology of Trees

Thursday, Nov. 19, 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. – See trees with a new perspective! In this lecture, you’ll discover more about the subtleties of seasons, lighting, tree features at eye level and ground level, fragrance, wildlife interactions and how to experience the full measure of trees. Learn how to use the artistic features of your existing trees more effectively in the landscape and how to plan for new trees. Pre-registration is required at

Free Adult Event: Lurie Garden Book Club

Thursday, Nov. 19, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. – In this exciting new event, join the Lurie Garden staff to discuss books pertaining to nature, horticulture and the environment. The featured book for fall is A Feathered Ribbon Across the Sky: The Passenger Pigeon’s Flight to Extinction, by Joel Greenberg. Pre-registration is required at

Fall Sunny Day Lurie Garden © Shawna Coronado.jpg

Fall Lurie Garden Walk © Shawna Coronado.jpg

Fall Native Plants Lurie Garden © Shawna Coronado.jpg

Fall Lurie Garden Grasses Chicago © Shawna Coronado

Fall Visitors Lurie Garden © Shawna Coronado.jpgAs the fall morning wore on, people started to arrive at The Lurie Garden, basking in the beautiful colors at the garden and suspending the last warmth of an Indian Summer in their memories of Chicago. Beautiful!

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  1. Love your piece on the Lurie Garden. What an incredible oasis of naturalistic splender in the heart of the city…Have only seen gardens by Piet Oudolf in books, so far. Hope to visit some in the coming years…Just started a blog and last week did a writeup of a talk Piet Oudolf gave in Vancouver last Monday (Nov. 16th). If you have a minute sometime, have a peek : )

  2. This garden is spectacular! So pretty! So many beautiful fall shades, and the purple is such a perfect pop of color. I really like that there is such a blend of everything – trees, plants, shrubs, flowers, whatever—but it all works together so well! What an awesome space in the heart of the city. Thanks for sharing!

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