Posted tagged ‘autumn’

Oh, the Leaves

October 11, 2022

P1000605With October here in Utah have come shorter days and cooler evenings, two of nature’s signals to deciduous trees to start shutting down for winter.   Accordiing to ZME Science, the chlorophyll in their leaves, which gave the leaves their green color, begins to break down, revealing other pigments that were hidden during the summer.  Leaves also contain the pigments called carotenoids; xanthophylls are yellow (such as in corn) and carotenes are orange (like in carrots).  Sugars stored within the leaves break down, producing bright red anthocyanins (which also help protect the tree while the leaves are fading).   The tree begins do build a protective layer between the leaves and its branches that eventually cause the leaves to fall off.  Even from our front porch we can see the foliage on the Wasach Mountain changing colors.  Oh, the leaves, you, hear people saying, and Oh, Fall is my favorite seasonIt’s not contest, cautions my favorite comedian, Jim Gaffigan, scolding us tongue-in-cheek for getting so much pleasure out of watching the leaves die (watch here). (more…)

California Autumn

November 3, 2015

ALFA ROMEOSpeeding along winding Connecticut road in an Alfa Romeo convertible, crisp autumn wind in our hair and our lives ahead of us.  A canopy of color overhead and fallen maple leaves, reds, yellows and browns, rising again in our wake.   When that is your best memory of autumn, California autumn can seem dull.   But if you look, there’s beauty beyond the fact that it isn’t followed by freezing temperatures and foot-deep snow.   Connecticut autumn shouts, LOOK!!, California autumns whisper, Look carefully, my friend.  I’m here.

This photo was taken with a star effect lens in our local park when the sun was low enough to brighten the colors of the usually muted Sycamore leaves and to glisten in the dew drops clinging to the leaves and branches.  New England, it ain’t.  But it’s beautiful in its own right.

Ca Autumn

Monday Smiles – 11/3/2014

November 3, 2014

P1000949Friday, Halloween night, the weather here in Socal finally took a look at the calendar and realized it was autumn.  The temperature fell into the fifties and it rained, fortunately late enough not to spoil the trick-or-treating for the few kiddies that made it to our door at the end of a cul-de-sac at the top of a hill.  By back East standards, our autumn here is pretty subtle and even into November there’s no guarantee that we won’t have some days where the temperature climbs into the eighties.  Still, I love it.  I love getting up on Saturday morning and putting on a long sleeved T-shirt to wear to the park and knowing that I should throw a windbreaker in the car for my walk.  I love what my Mom used to call the snap in the air and I love that we get cornflower blue skies and the kind of cottony clouds that I remember from my childhood in Connecticut, full of creatures to be found by imaginative children.   I’ve been watching the fall foliage in the photos from my friends on Facebook, and although my brother, Glenn, reminds me whenever I comment of the work needed to rake them once they fall, I’m still jealous.

More of the trees are evergreen here, pretending it’s summer through the depths of our winter, when the temperature plunges into the forties.  Even the deciduous trees are more bashful, less inclined to make a show of themselves.  The sycamore leaves turn briefly tan then a dull brown while the birch and aspens can’t bring themselves to display anything more exciting than yellow.  Others of our trees are merciless procrastinators, giving us only a taste of color now before turning crimson after winter arrives.  It takes a sharp eye to capture the beauty of autumn in early November here but I’ve always had one of those.  And fortunately, I usually have my camera along.  So, welcome to Socal Autumn (Click on any image to see a larger slideshow).

So, it’s Monday.  Autumn is here.  I’m smiling.


Southern California Autumn

October 23, 2013

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When the autumn weather
Turns leaves to flame
One hasn’t got time
For the waiting game

Oh, the days dwindle down
To a last precious few
September, November

And these few precious days
I’ll spend with you
These precious days
I’ll spend with you

September Song (Maxwell Anderson and Kurt Weill)

Monday Smiles – 10/16/2011

October 17, 2011

Muri and I moved to California from New England in 1971, which means we’ve spent substantially more than half our lives here.   We have considered moving back only once, when my employer was closing our plant here and offered me a position in Rhode Island.   We decided to stay put and I don’t think we’ve ever regretted it, except that our kids had to grow up without grandparents nearby.   We certainly don’t miss the summer humidity, driving in the snow or the mosquitoes.  But with our fond memories of speeding along winding Connecticut back roads in my Alfa Romeo with the top down, red and gold leaves dancing in the draft, how could we not miss autumn in New England?   Yes, the weather here in Socal turns delightfully cool as autumn rolls around and we have a few trees that do their best to get in the fall spirit, but it’s the profusion of color that’s lacking. (more…)