Winter rescue, color therapy

Winter rescue, color therapy
Summer Tomatoes

A little over a week ago, Chiberia was melting like a memory, or a nightmare of freezing rain.  Today, there’s softly falling snow, possibly 2 or 3 inches.  It’s lovely, airy stuff.

Winter has many beauties, yes—but  it’s been  wintery  since  November, and it’s not even February, yet…..

Maybe we need  some color therapy?

Well, it’s summer in the seed catalogs. Page after page of tomatoes and  melons ripening in the sun.  It’s the light that strikes me, the intensity of it, as well as all the green and  growing things. Here is the promise of summer days, warm and  round as tomatoes.

Dream of summer, plan a garden. Pick up some fresh produce at the grocery store. There, you can find tomatoes, somewhat anemic compared to the home grown variety, but you can find vine-ripe tomatoes, peppers, kale and spinach, even now. Think how good they would be all simmering together, filling your kitchen with added humidity and the aromas of garlic and oregano, rosemary  and basil.  Summer condensed in a sauce.

Need some more color?

Pantone has announced  the Color of the Year for 2014–Radiant Orchid.  The press release describes it this way–“An enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones, Radiant Orchid inspires confidence and emanates great joy, love and health….”

Who would not agree?  It is an enchanting, inspiring color, with exotic associations, as well. The sample doesn’t really convey its beauty, so here’s another example in orchid  form—


Florist shops have orchids, now. A spray can last longer than roses.

An orchid plant  is not difficult to grow, either. Thanks to modern hybrids, potted plants are available at florists and garden centers for very little money.

You can even find orchids for sale at the Jewel. How’s that for one-stop shopping?

Need  more color therapy?  There are jungles under glass at the Conservatories. Garfield Park Conservatory (take the Green Line) has a Palm Room. Lincoln Park Conservatory  has a wall of blooming orchids. The Oak Park Conservatory (just off the Blue Line ) has a fruiting lemon tree!

Inside is a  refuge of  green leaves and  moving water, multicolored koi and bright tropical birds. Breathe in the warm air and humidity.  Smell the damp earth and growing plants. It’s like being transported to a different planet.

Snow is falling outside, the world of winter, again.  In this world of dripping green, the colorful orchids are blooming…



Dreaming of summer?  Here’s a post for you.  Nostalgic for  CHIBERIA?  The arctic air  should be back in a couple of days. In the meantime, here’s a post for you.




Like this? Why not subscribe? Type your email address in the box and click the “create subscription” button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.

If you have Gmail, don’t miss out. Check your “promotions” box. Move one of my posts from the “promotions” box to “primary” and you’ll never miss a post. Thanks for reading!


Leave a comment
  • Orchids? Home Depot---believe it or not---has a marvelous melange of them. Good advice WG.

  • Thanks for reading, AW. Yes, I was amazed at the selection, there. Were you inspired to get one?

  • In reply to Weather Girl:

    Yes. Got my wife one for Christmas. It's ravishing, with red and yellow petals and violet-streaked white sepals.

  • That sounds absolutely amazing! Is it a moth orchid?

  • In reply to Weather Girl:

    Haven't seen any yet.

  • In reply to Aquinas wired:

    Well, it could be a butterfly orchid!

    What a lovely gift. Your wife must be a real sweetheart, AW.

  • I'm taking your advice and heading to the Oak Park Conservatory this week. I've never been and it sounds like the perfect escape to this cold weather!

  • In reply to Christine Arreola:

    Thanks so much for stopping by. The conservatories really are great winter getaways. We need the green, the blooming things, and the humidity!

    My favorite place is Garfield Park Conservatory, but Oak Park Conservatory is beautiful---there's koi, turtles and birds, too.

    Are you going to write about it for your daily adventures? Hope so!

  • Yes, I will! I'll link your post too. :) I want to go to Garfield Park as well, but I have a friend with a new baby that lives near Oak Park so we might go there first. Thanks again for the tips!

  • In reply to Christine Arreola:

    Thanks! I hope you all enjoy it. Can't wait to read about it!

  • Also, the Botanic Gardens in Northbrook have beautiful indoor blooms.

  • Thanks for reading, Yoga Mom! I forgot about the Botanic Gardens!!
    I have never been there in the winter. Yes, that's a beautiful place....

  • I love orchids but the color doesn't work for me in fabric. I keep trying to like it. Good advice about conservatory but I may wait until I am even more sick of the weather.

  • In reply to Kathy Mathews:

    Thanks for reading, Kathy! I know you appreciate the beauty of colors, for sure. We'll probably be seeing more of Radiant Orchid--
    I don't know what I would do with it, either....what colors would it go with?

    I do like the tomato red, though!

  • What colors would Radiant Orchid go with? White and itself! I think Pantone may be trying to cause fashion headaches, not solve them.

  • In reply to MargaretSerious:

    MargaretSerious, thanks for reading, and commenting!

    Maybe that sample of Radiant Orchid looks better in orchid form...

    However, I have seen some intriguing combinations online using it with light grays and purple; also coral, saffron yellow, and indigo; and greens and yellow-greens...

Leave a comment