Falling for a Little Color
October 25, 2020
It was sunny here Friday, but I dithered all day about going out with the camera when I had so much to do on the computer and telephone. I finally went out at 4:00, driving on country highways until I found some small roads untrafficked enough that I could put on my flashers and step out of the car. I was hunting for roadside weeds, many of which are colorful this time of year but don’t get their share of attention. Alas, only one photo from that shoot (#4) made the final cut. I had better luck with hill- and roadside foliage found while scoping out my neighborhood on foot yesterday and the week before.
1 These Red Maple trees are at the entrance to our community.
2 Looking at trees yesterday, I had the same thought several times, “I wonder if this is what gave the pointelists their idea.” This photograph is a close crop of #1.
3 A few Goldenrods were still blooming on our Wildflower Hill.
4 Even some greens seem to scream in the fall.
5 When the Goldenrod flower turns to seed, the leaves pick up the color.
6 The Sumac on Wildflower Hill was beginning to show its color last week.
7 A branch of Mulitflora Rose hangs in front of its own rose hips and wild Asters beside our ring road.
8 The Mulberry is invading our campus, a branch of which hangs over purple-turning native Dogwoods.
9 If this is an Asian Honeysuckle, as my resident botanist guesses from the scant information I bring him (Did it have any berries? Was it a schrub? Etc., etc.), then it’s another case of a bad (invasive) plant making a good (attractive) impression.
10 While I was walking around Green Pond last week, the sun struck this baby Ash tree. When I asked my husband for confirmation on the kind of tree it was (I was right), he also said something that I’d never heard before. Large Ash trees are a thing of the past, says David. This little Ash tree won’t grow up to be as big as its older relatives because the murderous Emerald Ash Borer will fell it before it gets the chance. It may, however, grow to a size too small to grow the tougher bark that the Emerald Ash Borer likes but still large enough to be reproductive. In this way, artificial selection may turn the ash tree into a dwarf species. This kind of evolutionary pressure—human driven this time—has already resulted in Swordfish becoming a smaller, yet still reproductive, fish due to overfishing of large Swordfish, he says.
11 The dark streak in this photograph is what remains of the Begger’s Ticks I photographed in late August. See them in the last photograph in this post.
12 What I liked about the scene in the previous photograph was the contrast between the light-colored Grasses and the dark Beggar’s Ticks. Turning the photo black and white may show the contrast even more.
13 In late August and early September Beggar’s Ticks ran in profusion along Wildflower Hill for the length of two or three city blocks. They’ll be back next year, when many other things may be also. BTW, the Latin binomial for these Beggar’s Ticks is Bidens coronata. Really.
How nice that you have red maple trees at the entrance to your community, and that they live up to their name at this time of year. You’re right that some plants that people consider weedy put on a good show in the fall; the dreaded poison ivy is among them.
The beggar’s ticks sure look good in your last photo. Is the species Bidens aristosa? Speaking of yellow, it good that you still have some fresh goldenrod flowers.
October 25, 2020 at 7:52 PM
Our beggar’s ticks are Bidens coronata, says my personal botanist. The goldenrods have finished flowering now, sad to say. Some of the red maples are going great guns, some are nearly bare, and some are still mostly green. I’ve added the Bidens information under the last photo. Glad you asked.
October 27, 2020 at 9:19 PM
Bi-dens means two-toothed. It’s a reference to the two barbed awns of the pappus in this genus.
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October 27, 2020 at 11:47 PM
Thanks for asking about the species of Bidens, Steve. I’ve added that information under the photograph.
October 25, 2020 at 9:46 PM
Beautiful images, my friend, especially the first one. 🙂
October 26, 2020 at 3:36 AM
Thanks, Adrian. I’m pleased you like them. This property has many red maples. Do you have that tree in England?
October 26, 2020 at 8:47 AM
I don’t think we do, except possibly in arboretum collections.
October 26, 2020 at 10:23 AM
Pity. Then you probably don’t know the pleasures of maple syrup.
October 27, 2020 at 9:24 PM
No, never tried it! 😦
October 28, 2020 at 4:54 AM
Poor you, Adrian. It’s really delicious. At least I think so!
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October 29, 2020 at 9:15 AM
And it’s a pleasure to see your photos. This is a particularly spectacular year for colorful foliage. We’ve expanded our walks to include local parks we’ve rarely visited, like the Kipton Reservation and Sheldon Woods.
October 26, 2020 at 10:36 AM
Thanks, David. I’m always torn between trying out new parks and going to Schoepfle Garden, where I know I will find something good.
October 26, 2020 at 11:49 AM
Beautiful selection, Linda. The red maple is a favorite any time of year.
October 26, 2020 at 11:25 AM
Thanks, Ken. We have a gorgeous specimen outside our back window. I don’t see how to get a good shot of it, though.
October 26, 2020 at 11:52 AM
The second one is my favorite, Linda. Being transported by the stained glass in places like Ste. Chapelle and Chartres always made me think it must have been inspired by sunlight streaming through fall foliage. My brother Larry mentioned these photos when we spoke on the phone last night, commenting on how your photography is abstract art.
October 26, 2020 at 11:40 AM
Oo, thanks, Marjorie (and Larry). So many artists speak about being inspired by nature. The inspiration doesn’t always show in obvious ways but has to be personally experienced by the viewer to understand.
October 26, 2020 at 11:57 AM
It’s nice to see some familiar friends here – the goldenrod and aster combination was such a staple of fall back east. I always loved it. There are asters here, and goldenrod, too, but they don’t consort the same way. 😉 That 3rd photo might be my favorite. I like the alternation of light and shadow in it, too. I never thought about the fact that Goldenrod loses its flower color just as the leaves turn yellow – cool! I don’t know anything about Asian honeysuckle, but is that it in #5, too, with the berries? That’s a graceful arc in #9, I can see why it caught your eye. The elongated vertical of the Multiflora rose is very nice and oh, those amazing purples of the native Dogwood!. #11 & #12 are a great pair; they both really work, to me. I remembered the genus ‘Bidens’ but didn’t quite remember the whole name of that wildflower – it took me a few seconds – good one, Linda! 😉 We can only hope…those hills must be incredible when that flower is in bloom. First and last photos = happy bookends. 🙂
October 27, 2020 at 4:55 PM
Around here we don’t see much goldenrod and New England aster together—though it does happen, as you see. Mostly, the goldenrod has quit by the time the asters flower. I had to knock back the brightness of the goldenrod in #3. It was way too glaring and didn’t play well with the other elements of the composition. Yes, says David, that is Asian honeysuckle in #5. Wildflower Hill was something wonderful when the Bidens were out. The yellow is so intense. I had to tone back the color in the last photo, too. Thanks as always for your thoughtful comments, Lynn.
October 27, 2020 at 9:03 PM
I enjoyed all the images but the last one with those lovely yellow Beggar’s Ticks flowers won me over. I generally am not a fan of them as I have worn their seeds home on many occasions but the flowers are lovely.
November 1, 2020 at 7:17 PM
I, too, have been plagued by the Beggar’s Ticks seeds and never knew about their flowers until moving here. I’d probably seen them before, but their profuse display on this property prompted me to ask my husband their name. Surprise. Glad you enjoyed these, Steve; thanks for telling me.
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November 1, 2020 at 7:57 PM