The days recently have been absolutely yummy. Blue skies, low humidity – perfect for hiking during the day and wonderful for sleeping at night. It’s been a dream, being able to hike up my mountain and watch as the leaves change from their summer blue-greens to their autumn tones of chartreuse, lemon, lime, golds, mango, crimson and every color in between. The colors are changing much more rapidly than I ever expected. Of course, I’ve never in my life observed nature so closely as I have the past many months.
Some things are slowing down. I’m not seeing nearly as many new flowers now. Goldenrod season seems to be coming to an end. Asters in shades of snow white, lavender and grape are still going full speed ahead but I don’t see many buds left on them, to open when I’m not looking. The next big floral display I’m awaiting, is the opening of the Witch Hazel. That will be a delight when it happens, and I’ll photograph the blossoms and share them with you. I expect that won’t happen for another several weeks though.
I’m watching, each trip I take, out the gate and up the road, to see what happens. I’ve spotted many patches of beautiful ferns along my daily route. My turn-around point is marked by Maidenhair Fern on one side, and Sensitive Fern on the other. The Sensitive Fern has been given that name because it quickly withers and dies back when the temperatures get to be too cold. I’m watching to see at what point in the season that will happen. Fortunately the woods are also filled with many evergreen ferns, such as Christmas Fern, so I’ll be seeing that finery as I go about my observing during the winter. Another beautiful season to look forward to!