Fall Colors

Chris Harwood

"Sensational September" is now over, and naturalist and author Larry Weber notes that, despite what you may think, September was actually 2 degrees warmer than normal.  Not many hot days, but there were also not many chilly days.  But there was also about 1.5 inches more precipitation than usual.

©John Heino. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

They're responsible for millions of dollars in tourism revenue across the country, and feature prominently in the portfolios of photographers, artists and anybody with a smart phone.

But those fall colors: the gorgeous reds (anthocyanins) and shimmering yellow and oranges (carotenoids) are really a kind of tree sunscreen.

Seriously.

MN DNR

It's an unusual fall in Minnesota.

Tettegouche State Park interpretive naturalist Kurt Mead says things are still pretty green along the North Shore, but they're around 60% peak a little further inland, and in southern Minnesota (which usually lags behind the Northland) the colors are already popping. 

For more information on the fall colors around the state, check out the Fall Color Finder on the DNR's website.

© Dorian [via Flickr]

Larry Weber, educator, author and naturalist, talks about his observations in nature this week, including light from the Milky Way and Andromeda galaxies, and from glowworms who are feeding before they bed down for winter.  Despite the warm temps of late the fall foliage is showing some brilliant yellows and reds.  Larry has seen woolly bear caterpillars and an eastern tiger swallowtail butterfly.  The fog yesterday also provided a brilliant showing of spider webs. 

Lisa Johnson

Phase one is the showy fall color of September trees.

Phase two is the yellow gold of the aspens at the beginning of October.

Last but not least: phase three.  The tamaracks show up everyone else with their show mid-October. 

Lisa Johnson

Outdoorspeople, in particular, decry our modern dependence on technology and electronics.

Thorsburg Photography

Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory has been counting migrants on the ridge for two weeks already, the sun is setting before 8pm and reds and yellows are popping up in all kinds of trees and bushes.

Author and naturalist Larry Weber says goodbye to August and hello to autumn.