Fall color on the shores of Green Lake

Fall color on the shores of Green Lake

“However we may feel about strong colour during the spring and summer, there are few who do not welcome it in the autumn garden.  It is as if we wished to fill our souls with warmth and gaiety against the time when winter with its cold white silence shall lie upon the land.”
— Louise Beebe Wilder, Colour in My Garden, 1935

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My 40-year-old dictionary has been getting a real workout pressing leaves this fall.

My 40-year-old dictionary has been getting a real workout pressing leaves this fall.

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Watercolor sketch of fall leaves

 

 

Autumn’s Red Hues

October 18, 2013

“We love to see any redness in the vegetation of the temperate zone.  It is the color of colors.”
— Henry David Thoreau, October, or Autumnal Tints

Looking down the street where I live

Looking down the street where I live

“As fruits and leaves and the day itself acquire a bright tint just before they fall, so the year near its setting. October is its sunset sky; November the later twilight.”
— Henry David Thoreau, October, or Autumnal Tints

We are certainly seeing the sunset colors of October in our Seattle foliage right now.  These are some of the things I see as I walk around my neighborhood:
Looking down Corliss Ave N

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Jeweled leaves on bushes

Jeweled leaves on bushes

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Canna leaf

Grape leaves with grapes

Carpet of red

Fall
by Edward Hirsch

Fall, falling, fallen. That’s the way the season
Changes its tense in the long-haired maples
That dot the road; the veiny hand-shaped leaves
Redden on their branches (in a fiery competition
With the final remaining cardinals) and then
Begin to sidle and float through the air, at last
Settling into colorful layers carpeting the ground.
At twilight the light, too, is layered in the trees
In a season of odd, dusky congruences—a scarlet tanager
And the odor of burning leaves, a golden retriever
Loping down the center of a wide street and the sun
Setting behind smoke-filled trees in the distance,
A gap opening up in the treetops and a bruised cloud
Blamelessly filling the space with purples. Everything
Changes and moves in the split second between summer’s
Sprawling past and winter’s hard revision, one moment
Pulling out of the station according to schedule,
Another moment arriving on the next platform. It
Happens almost like clockwork: the leaves drift away
From their branches and gather slowly at our feet,
Sliding over our ankles, and the season begins moving
Around us even as its colorful weather moves us,
Even as it pulls us into its dusty, twilit pockets.
And every year there is a brief, startling moment
When we pause in the middle of a long walk home and
Suddenly feel something invisible and weightless
Touching our shoulders, sweeping down from the air:
It is the autumn wind pressing against our bodies;
It is the changing light of fall falling on us.

May your summer be filled with red letter days!

Lucifer crocosmia

Two pots of strikingly red geraniums brighten this yard.

Hummingbird feeder, no hummers

Ethereal poppy

Boat rentals at Green Lake

Ubiquitous red stop signs

Rainier cherries, Pike Place Market

Raspberries, Pike Place Market

Fire engine red

Red chairs in the pavilion at Olympic Sculpture Park, with “Encounters with Water” wall art

The Seattle signature (muted) wardrobe brightened by a red beach bucket