I usually dread autumn. It’s not that autumn itself is a problem, but it means winter is coming, and I hate winter. Give me the freedom of shorts and T-shirts year round! But even I have to admit that we are having an unusually gorgeous autumn, and I’m actually enjoying it.
A typical central-Indiana autumn sees haphazard color for a couple weeks, and just when it starts getting good the leaves turn brown en masse and fall. Humbug. But this year, the color is taking its time. The tops of many trees started to change first. Sunrise touching those treetops made them glow; it’s been hard to pay attention to the road when I drive to work. The color then crept along the branch tips, creating a yellow, orange, or red outer layer with a still-green core, as if the trees had been frosted. Most of those trees have changed color entirely now, but many of their neighbors are beginning to change color around the edges. How long can this show last?
Over the weekend I toured the neighborhood with my camera, trying to be artsy again but mostly failing. At least I captured some excellent color.
My neighbor has two maples at the edge of his front yard. One’s gone yellow and the other’s just starting.
This is his yellow tree. It was late afternoon, and I liked how the sun was highlighting some leaves and hiding others in the shadows.
A huge evergreen is at the center of another neighbor’s front yard; beyond it, the afternoon sun really made its neighboring trees pop.
Here’s a good example of how the color makes its way down a tree’s edges. I want to keep checking every day to see how it’s progressed!
This tree, out on the main road, was green on the inside a week ago. I watched it change from the outside in every day as I pulled out of my neighborhood on my way to work. Now it really commands attention.
I saved my favorite tree in the neighborhood for last. Trite superlatives such as “fieriest glory” are all I can come up with to describe it, but it is late as I write this and I need to get to bed, so that’s what you get!
I wrote more last year about how childhood memories shape how I feel about fall. Check it out.
Last updated on 7 February 2020 by Jim Grey