Missouri Botanical Garden. When I first arrived in St. Louis, it was still summer with green trees and flowers everywhere. Over the months I have been here, the gardens have succumbed to autumn and now into winter.
One of my favorite areas when I first came was the Woodland Garden. It was like a fairyland of supple trees interspersed with creeks and benches with flowers springing up from the turf and ferns. Overhead birds sweetly chirped during the day. Recently, though, the trees have lost their bright leaves and instead of a lush green forest floor there is a tangle of skeletal twigs and fallen leaves beginning to decay.
As I sat in the Woodland Garden looking around at how much it had changed, I asked myself why I continued to come even after it had lost its fairylike quality. As I looked around, I realized it was still beautiful, but in a different way. There is a stark, yet dreamy quality to the bare trunks and scattered garments of leaves on the ground. If the gardeners were to rake up all the leaves, many places would merely show bare dirt. The untidy lived in quality of the forest had become a part of its beauty. To "clean it up" would be to truly rob the woods of their attraction.
—Alexa Chipman (http://imaginationlane.net/blog)