Don’t let the warm days fool you and take the calendar date with a grain of salt. Summer is over. The Almighty has commissioned a change in the season. I have seen it with my own eyes. I’m speaking of my natural calendar. For me Fall is when the leaves change color. The Yellow Poplar is among the first to change. Even with the long dry spell that we’ve had the leaves turn from a rich green to a cheerful yellow. A lot of people think that the color comes from cool weather but it’s actually in response to the wavelength of the light coming from the sun. Plants are vreally very efficient. The green chlorophyll is only able to use certain wavelengths of light and when those wavelengths are no longer available the chlorophyll dyes and the green goes away. The other colors were always there but they were covered by the green. The yellow color comes from Xanthophyll and the reds from Rodophyll. The tree is still processing sunlight into sugar and will continue to do so until the leaves drop. But the green is no longer needed so there’s no sense in maintaining those cells. Different types of trees have different llevels of the yellow and green pigments and so we get the beautiful mice of colors in the Appalachian Mountains.
At the first sign of changing leaves I start to crave the taste of homemade beef stew that’s been simmering on a woodstove all day. I have already been looking for my favorite oversized flannel shirt and have my boots ready for long walks through open forests. During the summer months the underbrush is likely to be hiding a venomous snake in my area so I get the most use of the trails in cool weather.
The big question this year is will we get to enjoy the Fall colors or will the dry weather drive the forest into an early dormancy. If the tree can’t get enough water to make sugar then it doesn’t need the leaves and shuts down until Spring.
The pop of yellow in this clump of trees does give me hope that we’ll see a beautiful and colorful Fall if it rains soon.
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Grey skies cover the Kanawha River as the mountains rise to challenge the clouds. I stand on the edge of the boat launch looking at the peaceful water and I know that their challenge is in vain. Soon the fiery colors of fall will be washed away leaving only the bare branches to reach for the warmth of the sun. On the other side of the falls the turbine of the hydro plant produces fire from water and feeds it through the copper lines to warm the homes and even to make steel in the foundry down river. The time of resting is close at hand and the coolness of the evening air whispers softly that I must be on my way back to my warm home and the love that lives there.
Hello Friends and thank you for your support of my page. If you have enjoyed the photos or the writings please let me know by commenting and sharing my work on your social media. I also want to invite you to Follow Lloyds Lens Photography on Facebook. Recently, I’ve been made aware that many of my posts on Facebook are being buried in the feed. So, if you don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website at the bottom of the Welcome Page.
Tonight’s Feature Image is titled “Two Fires On Kanawha Falls” (for the hydro plant’s electric “fire & The Fall colors on the opposite end of the falls) and is available for purchase by contacting me on Facebook or by using the Contact Form on my website. (Note, I do not share or sale contact information. EVER.)
4X6 is $5.00
5X7 is $10.00
8X10 is $15.00
I’m also available for portraits by appointment. Use the Contact Form or message me on Facebook for details.
It’s hard to believe that in just a few short weeks summer will be over. The pop of color from the wildflowers will be replaced by the reds and yellows of the fall leaves. The soft feeling of the the cool green grass on bare feet will give way to the dry crunch of fallen leaves beneath my favorite pair of boots.
I spent a few minutes outside of my office at my day job and there was a familiar crisp scent in the air. The wind blew a little cooler and I knew that this was the prelude to the change of seasons. The Appalachian Mountains in fall are one of the most beautiful sights your eyes can behold. The vast forests give us a grand finale with a symphony of color just before the trees take their winter slumber. The days are still warm enough to enjoy without the jungle like humidity. For a brief time the trilling song of the tree frogs will change over to the chirps of katydid. The bucks will begin to rub away the velvet from their antlers and establish their territory with epic wrestling matches. The bears are now fat and looking for a nice quiet den to sleep in. Country gardens are in harvest and those who still live off of the land are busy with canning. The wonderful aromas of stews, jellies and jams are coming from every hill and holler in the backcountry. So breathe in the last few moments of summer and get ready for the grand finale of Fall.