Linda Grashoff's Photography Adventures

Schoepfle Garden, the Cull from Three Visits

October 18, 2020

In all of 2020 so far, I have only been to Schoepfle Garden, my old hunting grounds, four times. Until March, I was a sissy about the cold. Then came the pandemic and our lockdown. So the first time I went was August 9. I was so rusty that I came away with only one photograph, the first one in this post. I went again once in September and twice so far this month. This is the cull from the first three trips.

This tree is almost on the bank of the river. The other shore is bounded by a cliff. So when the high-enough sun pours through the leaves of the tree, the cliff is left in the dark, and the trunk and branches are in silhouette.

2 The leaves were just beginning to turn September 26.

3 I have a hard time distinguishing poison ivy from Virginia creeper. Good thing I’m immune.

4 I have been trying for years to make a photograph I like with these meandering tree roots on the bank of the river. Finally, on October 10, I saw them as contrast to the vertical tree trunks above the floodplain.

5 It’s been a while since I’ve clambered on top of this rock to sit and take in the peace around me. Waters of spring thaws have scooped out the soil around it, making the top higher from the ground, thwarting my attempts.

6 It’s still worth visiting what I call Peace Rock, though. Especially when the knotweed flowers at its base catch a shaft of sunlight.

7 I never walked across the river this year to see the more spectacular evidence of Leptothrix discophora, but this subtle version, a young film, still satisfies the craving for my favorite bacterium.

8 And this tiny patch, about three inches high, is a little thrill.

27 responses

  1. logokane

    I’m glad you are back at it. Lovely. Thank you. Lois Kane.


    October 18, 2020 at 11:46 AM

    • Thanks, Lois; I’m glad to be back. There’s just something about sharing the work that enhances the experience of making it.

      Liked by 1 person

      October 18, 2020 at 11:53 AM

  2. Susan Egloff

    Thanks for the renewal. We were there yesterday. Wonderful as always😊


    October 18, 2020 at 12:25 PM

    • You’re so welcome, Sue. I think Schoepfle Garden is the best park around here. There’s so much variety of nature to enjoy.


      October 18, 2020 at 12:58 PM

  3. Translucence works well in your first photo, especially against a dark background. The contrast between horizontal and vertical in #4 also works well.

    Your comment on #8 is a reminder that for you Leptothrix is always Leptothrill.


    October 18, 2020 at 12:45 PM

    • You made me chuckle out loud, Steve, with your “Leptothrill.” Thanks for your comments, especially on #4.


      October 18, 2020 at 1:01 PM

  4. Anonymous

    Linda, I just loved visiting the river again and seeing it through your wonderful photography! I feel the peace there, too, and have several strong memories of experiences and sights. Once I put my camp chair in the water and did some water color painting– with water swirling around my feet on a lovely summer day. Your capturing contrasts is such a good way to highlight great details. Thanks for sharing! Joyce


    October 18, 2020 at 2:33 PM

    • Thanks, Joyce. I’m glad you enjoyed these photographs—and your own time on the Vermilion River.


      October 18, 2020 at 7:54 PM

  5. Sue

    Peace rock image with the light is great


    October 19, 2020 at 4:32 AM

  6. I love knotweed and that picture is so poetic. Thanks, Linda!


    October 19, 2020 at 9:08 AM

    • You’re welcome, Clare. Thanks for letting me know you like the photograph.


      October 19, 2020 at 10:47 AM

  7. Beautiful pictures, my friend – I really like 1, 2 and 7, but 3 is my favourite. Yes, covid has hit us all, and now we are looking at a difficult winter. I haven’t really done a dedicated photo trip since March, and I feel drained of energy. Very glad to hear that you are over your recent problems, having all that during the pandemic must have been a hard trial indeed.


    October 20, 2020 at 9:10 AM

    • It was hard, but you know how it goes: The difficulty goes out the rear-view mirror. I’m feeling pretty good most days, as I did before our flood. Thank you for calling #3 your favorite. I almost didn’t include it. The composition is a little weird, but every time I looked at that one, it had an emotional charge, so I put it in. I hope your energy soon flows back, Adrian. We need you to stay in the game. Thanks for writing here; your comments always mean a lot to me.


      October 20, 2020 at 9:41 AM

  8. All the love is here, I can see it. I’m glad you included the first photo – it’s beautiful. I know how it feels when you see an interesting phenomenon, like those roots, and can’t figure out a good way to photograph it, and after looking at it for the tenth time you finally have an idea. 🙂 I like reading about that trick. It made me feel even more drawn to it. It is somehow nestled into its setting, the way I imagine you are nestled into the environment there. I love the knotweed photo – I always called it Smartweed, another name for it, one I think is amusing. Why?? The first Leptothrix photo is beautiful – the film looks so thick and slick. I don’t mind that it doesn’t have the rainbow colors – the sheen is amazing, especially where it meets the leaves and then cracks. But it’s nice to see the classic (?) colors in the last photo. I’m so glad you’ve been able to get back to the gardens and river.

    (Doesn’t that have to be Virginia creeper because it’s four leaves, not three, or have I forgotten everything?)


    October 20, 2020 at 3:59 PM

    • Well, yes, there is that fingers-three-let-them-be thing, but what if one of the leaflets just fell off, or what if it was some kind of mutated plant, or what if I just didn’t look carefully enough? Yeah, you’re right: I should know. The first one is another photograph I wasn’t sure I should include; it’s such a no-brainer. But the roots photograph? I knew I wanted to include it. I had to resort to Color Efex Pro to make the brown roots stand out from the brown bank, but it was worth the work to me. Yes, I am nestled into the environment there. The other night I watched My Octopus Teacher (recommend recommend recommend!). In the film the star, Craig Foster, muses that when you go to the same place again and again, you are very aware when something changes. I have thought and said that so many times about my trips to the same part of Schoepfle Garden. So, yeah, I am definitely nestled. Found this for you: “The plants are called smartweed because they have a sharp, peppery flavor and their plant juice makes one’s eyes run.” ( The film in #7 may look thick, but it really isn’t. It’s probably between fractions of a nanometer and several micrometers in thickness. ( A nanometer is one-billionth of a meter, and a micrometer is a millionth of a meter. (I had to look all this stuff up; hope my interpretations are right. Anyway, the film is pretty thin.) Thanks for being glad for me. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      October 20, 2020 at 9:08 PM

      • I laughed when I read your reply to leaves-of-3-let-it-be. Or whatever the expression is.
        Did you tell me to watch that movie before, or was it someone else?
        Thank you for the smartweed explanation.
        Thin film, OK!! 🙂 But it does look thicker; I like the substantive feeling, almost like mercury, but only in the second shot, not the first. In that one it looks really thin. Light plays such tricks on reflective surfaces, right?


        October 27, 2020 at 5:05 PM

        • Must have been someone else who recommended My Octopus Teacher. This was the first time I recommended it. Yes, light does play tricks on reflective surfaces—and makes it hard to get the right exposure.


          October 27, 2020 at 8:03 PM

  9. the Porters

    Dear Linda,
    Your lovely photographs of Schoepfle, our favorite gardens in the Lorain County Park System, let us bask in the illusion that Spring has returned! Many thanks,
    Larry and Marjorie


    October 21, 2020 at 8:20 PM

    • Thank you, Larry and Marjorie. If we wait long enough, it will. 😉


      October 21, 2020 at 9:21 PM

  10. I’m so happy to see the two Leptothrix bacterial film images, Linda, both because I find them fascinating and because I know you like to photograph them. With all you’ve been through this summer, I hope they brought a little normalcy back to your life. 🙂 The other image that really caught my eye was the first one. It could be easy to just glance over it on the way down the page but when I stopped and looked at the way the masses of backlit leaves lead my eye around the frame, with many of the individual leaves just at the limit of definition…it became beautifully abstract. I found it to be very cool!

    Liked by 1 person

    October 22, 2020 at 10:05 PM

  11. Finding the Leptothrix discophora certainly was like the old days. So you’re fascinated by it, too. Happy to hear that! I’m also glad that you were entertained by the first photograph. Every time I see the sun come through the leave of that tree, I am transfixed. I’ve taken many photographs similar to this one, but none of them were worth sharing. Thanks for writing, Mic.

    Liked by 1 person

    October 23, 2020 at 7:42 PM

  12. That first image with the backlit leaves is wonderful, Linda! And how many people would see the bacterial beauty in that floating Leptothrix discophora much less be thrilled by it? Five leaves on Virginia Creeper make it less difficult to distinguish but many people mistake it for poison ivy. We’ve got loads of it after our wood chip pile became inundated with the crawling vine.


    October 26, 2020 at 7:51 PM

    • Thank you, Steve. I hope I am helping people see the beauty in Leptothrix discophora. I suppose it’s better for people to mistake Virginia creeper for poison ivy than to mistake poison ivy for Virginia creeper. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      October 26, 2020 at 8:12 PM

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