Late September

Seattle’s Center for Urban Horticulture and the adjoining Union Bay Natural Area are two great places to escape the stress of the city.  I usually start in the small Soest Display Garden, where I can examine the new blooms. Then I like to wander through the open fields and wetlands behind the garden.  Often a Great Blue Heron can be found at the edge of the lake, holding still, every pore of its body focused on the water at its feet.  By that time, the traffic has been forgotten and I can follow the heron’s lead.

Here I’ve reversed the order of my afternoon stroll last Saturday, starting with the Union Bay wetlands and finishing in the garden.

Early fall finds wild asters blooming in the fields as grasses relax gracefully towards the earth.

I admit I had to force myself to take, process and include this photo – I’m just not a spider lover, but they are an important part of the picture around here, especially in September.

Tall rushes (Juncus sp.) have fallen in linear drifts, like a vanquished army.


Back at the garden, an ornamental grass (Hakone) goes to seed in an eye-catching dance of soft magenta, cream and chartreuse.

The photogenic sea holly (Eryngium) bristles with electric blue flowers and bracts – even the stems are blue!

A lavender flotilla of asters attracts bees.

An unusual dark-leaved dahlia stretches towards the waning late summer sun.

Hibiscus floods the garden with unembarrassed pink joy.

And lovely hybrid Japanese anemones nod gracefully in the breeze on long, trailing stems.



    • Thank you – if only I could get the birds as well as you do, I’d have a nice photo of the heron to add. But I’ve limited myself to a basic kit lens for now, so I will be happy with what I can do with that!


  1. Fantastic images. I’ve never seen a live sea holly. It looks utterly gorgeous (my favorite color, too!) Those anemones may be lovely, but they’re like an invading army in my yard… doing their best to take over. Remains to be seen who wins the war.


    • That’s interesting about the anenomes. I’ve noticed that out here on the west coast plants become invasive that don’t create problems on the east coast (but not always). I don’t know why they call the Eryngium “Sea holly” – maybe because it’s so prickly & it’s blue? I guess.


  2. I always love seeing your images and the accompanying descriptions BB.
    Some real treasures here .

    PS I wonder why the Theme type is so small I would love to see a slightly larger font or that just me 😉


    • It IS small, isn’t it? I don’t get why they can’t program the themes to accept font size changes – at least 3 different sizes would be so much better. Thank you for stopping by and commenting, and you know I always enjoy your blog as well…oh, and some poppies are coming next!


    • Funny, isn’t it? I still can’t rest my eyes on that spider….but I’ve seen other blogs with close-ups of spiders that people comment on so I thought I should try to get over it! Bees I have no problem with, even though one afternoon I was attacked by a swarm, stung dozens of times, felt like I was going to pass out, and drove myself to the ER! I should have more fear….


    • Thank you! The Sea Holly is so photogenic – you can hardly go wrong – but the native grasses & rushes are more subtle and I think one has to work harder to get an image that connects with what one feels about them, if that makes sense.


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