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Cleveland's Fall Colors
It may be just a single vivid slash of turning leaves. Or perhaps a few, here and there. And then the color shift migrates from tree to tree.
When backlit by the low strong sun of autumn, leaves seem to fluoresce from within in vivid and varied hues.
The bark of twig and stem and trunk seems to darken and glisten in damp, chill contrast to the hot colors of foliage.
Meanwhile, whether still vivid green or becoming acidic yellow, the laggards of the lot begin their fall transformation, some from bottom to top, some from top to bottom.
Lawns retain their viridian hues a while longer, as the syncopated species of tree and shrub show their individuality.
Bare trunks and pumpkin colors conjure up images of goblins and jack-o-lanterns, cornstalks and bats, and one last hurrah of a holiday before winter creeps upon us.
Above the riot of colors, a crisp deep blue sky envelopes us, wisped with gauzy streamers of haze, or puffed with bright sailing cotton tufts.
As the nights get cooler and the sun sinks lower, we are treated to spectacular dusk displays of form and color.
And, as the days stretch to weeks, still the foliage about us keeps to its annual choreographed rhythm, with each turning in turn.
At times we can read the marching of the days in the progressional shift of color in a single specimen or in a treeline.
Magenta? Fuchsia? Cerise? Grenadine? Raspberry? The changing tints of the landscape around us often confound with the uniqueness of their hues.
Marveling at the color change, it's difficult to understand — but true — that what we are seeing is not color change at all. All of the vivid colors of autumn — the reds, oranges, yellows, purples — are all in fact resident within the foliage year-round. It is simply the annual die-off of chlorophyll each autumn that removes the overpowering green tint, thereby allowing the long-hidden hot spectrum of other colors to shine through.
The glories of North Chagrin Reservation
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