Monday, November 16, 2009

Our Green and Brown Fall

A normal Hinton fall sees the local aspen and balsam poplar trees in golden glory during the last 2 weeks of September and the first strong wind in early October usually strips the trees bare. 2009 was a very unusual year. First we had a late spring and leaf flush was at least 2 weeks later than usual. Then the summer and early fall was exceptionally warm and dry. By the end of September our deciduous trees were still green and the leaves were still strongly attached. Through October the leaves remained on the trees. Some turned golden but most either turned brown or a lighter shade of green. Eventually they fell, though mostly a month or more past their usual trip to the ground.

So what caused this? Were the trees trying to make up for lost time? Were they stressed by drought? Why did the trees fail to withdraw their chlorophyll from their leaves? Nobody knows for sure, but we certainly missed out on a normal fall. Next year I hope we return to normal. I love the rain of golden leaves and the "yellow brick road" on all the local trails.

1 comment:

Jen said...

you have such beautiful photos on here dad. :D