Today’s temperature hovered around 90 degrees as I headed out for a trail walk in Holden Arboretum. Although most of the trees along the trail are still green, a few, like the beauty above, are definitely announcing the arrival of Autumn. Am I looking forward to cooler temperatures? You bet I am! Hands down, Autumn is my favorite season, and I’m anticipating some colorful trail walks during October…and into November.
Here are the first pictures for my Autumn album:
And finally, one of my favorite trees: the sugar maple. Every year, I photograph the transition of this magnificent tree from summer into autumn and eventually winter. Here’s the first picture, still dressed in green garb, but preparing for the dramatic change coming in the months ahead.
That’s it for week one of this year’s Autumn Album. If you are a trail walker who loves Autumn, come back next week when I will share more Autumn images.
Late afternoon, and I had the Arboretum trails almost entirely to myself. One or two dogs were out for an afternoon stroll with their human companions, and I came upon one family group, but with no one to engage in conversation, I enjoyed a quiet stroll around Lotus Pond, down the hill to Blueberry pond (Pictured above), and back to the car park before dark. Come along and enjoy the beauty with me.
Of course, for me a trail walk at the Arboretum is not complete unless I make the circle around Lotus Pond to enjoy the many sides of the Golden Willow Tree.
Today, because I had a little time left before the sun sank below the horizon, I decided to follow the trail from Lotus Pond to Blueberry Pond. I hadn’t walked that way in a while and checking it out in near-dusk on this late Autumn afternoon was a delightful experience. The clump of birch trees to the left of the trail and the bench at the top of today’s blog post caught my eye, and I paused to capture a colorful photo of the shoreline of Blueberry Pond.
From Blueberry Pond, I climbed the hill, returning to the visitor’s center where I found my car, sitting nearly solitary in the parking lot. Chilled, but happy with the images I had collected, I stowed my camera pack in the back seat, started the car, turned on the heater, and headed home.
Thanks for joining me for today’s trail walk. See you soon! Trail Walker
Earlier this week, I lifted my eyes from the keyboard and glanced out the window next to my computer. It was already late afternoon on what had started out as a gloomy overcast day. To my delight, outside my window the sun was shining! I immediately went into action. Leaping out of my chair and grabbing my camera, I invited Bob to leave his desk and head to Holden Arboretum with me for an impromptu trail walk.
Two weeks earlier, I had visited the Arboretum, hoping to find the sugar maple tree crowned in glorious autumn color…not an unreasonable expectation in the middle of October. Normally we would have nearly reached peak color here on the south shore of Lake Erie by that time, but that afternoon, to my disappointment, the tree still looked much like it had in mid-summer: beautiful, but almost entirely green.
Today, with the late afternoon sun shining and puffy white clouds in a beautiful blue sky, I almost held my breath as I hurried down the trail to where I could catch sight of the tree. My expectations weren’t high because the end of October is well past the time for peak color in northeast Ohio, and in a normal year, the maple would have lost most of its color and many of its leaves by the first of November (the day I am writing this post).
Then I rounded the curve in the trail and saw the maple.
My heart burst with joy.
I hadn’t missed its peak color after all!
Three more for today from my Color Me Autumn trail walks (Click to enlarge pictures)
Autumn red near Lotus Pond
View from under the sugar maple
Thanks for joining me on the trail today.
I’ll be back soon to share more Autumn joy.
It was a perfect day for a trail walk, so I headed to Holden Arboretum because the sun was shining, the sky was blue, and I hoped to find some photos to add to my “Color Me Autumn” collection. Parking my car, I hurried down the trail to the sugar maple tree, which by this time should be showing beautiful color. One glance at the tree, pictured above, told me that Autumn wasn’t making much progress. At least not yet! If I were to give it a grade, based on the colors I could see, I would probably give it a D+ (I’m a tough grader and, based on recent Octobers, my expectations are high). Frosty nights (but not too frosty) and bright, sunshiny days are the necessary conditions to create the colors that make Autumn my favorite season. Walking all around the tree to view it from all angles, I realized, to my disappointment, that it was still mostly green. It’s a beautiful tree, but green isn’t what I was expecting to see the second week in October. Sigh! Oh well, I’ll just go back to the Arboretum next week and update my Autumn color report. Meanwhile, here are a few more pictures from week two. Although I’m giving today’s trail walk a low grade for “fall color,” it still earns high marks for overall beauty.
That’s all for this week, trail walking friends. See you next week! Trail Walker
Suddenly, it is beginning to look like Autumn. Time to break out my “Color Me Autumn” tag and get out for some Autumn trail walks…My favorite season!
As soon as my dentist appointment ended this morning (Perfect report from the hygienist), I headed for the Arboretum. I don’t have time to write more tonight, but here are a few pictures from today’s trail walk to show that Autumn colors are beginning to appear despite the predominately green leaves.
The leaves on the golden willow tree will eventually turn yellow, but the transition is slow. Look around the tree, however, and you will see more Autumn colors.
Are you seeing Autumn in your neighborhood or are you saying goodbye to winter? Whichever season you are leaving (or entering), as you walk along the trail with your camera, you are sure to find something beautiful to photograph. Go on out and enjoy it whenever you can. That’s what I’m planning to do.
The end of the first week in June seemed to me like a perfect time for a visit to Holden Arboretum. My friends Lisa and Lorna agreed to join me, so we set a date and began looking forward to our semi-annual trail walk at Holden.
The morning arrived with unseasonably cool temperatures and the threat of rain, but we weren’t deterred. Meeting at the Visitors’ Center, we meandered along the trail past Lotus Pond. If the golden willow, pictured below, looks familiar, you probably remember that it is one of my favorite trees along the trail, one I can’t pass by without stopping to take a picture, or two or three.
Reaching the entrance to the rhododendron garden, we paused long enough to soak in the beauty of the landscape, and to take a quick picture of a black squirrel sitting in front of a tall rhododendron. Black squirrels are a bit of an anomaly, and they have an interesting history. In 2011 Kent State University (in nearby Kent Ohio) celebrated 50 years since the first black squirrels, transported from Canada, were released on their campus. In that 50 years the squirrels have become something of an icon on the northeast Ohio campus (If interested, you can read more about the furry rodents here).
On down the trail, we continued through the rhododendron garden to Hourglass Pond where we stopped to enjoy the view from a bench our friend Margaret has dedicated to the memory of her husband Don. We also took a close look at the cypress trees with their strange “knees” that grow on the edge of the pond. If you’ve never encountered cypress knees, you can see the strange protruding roots in the pictures below. Cypress trees favor a very moist environment, and that’s where we saw these knees. Look at the base of the trees, and you will see them too.
At this point, we agreed it was almost time for lunch, so I took one more picture of Hourglass Pond before we turned back to the visitors’ center, following the round-about trail along the perimeter of Corning Lake, snapping pictures as we went.
To top off the afternoon, we enjoyed our bag lunches on the back patio of the visitors’ center. It definitely hadn’t been the sunny day in June we expected when we made our plans to meet at the Arboretum, but Holden never disappoints, and it certainly didn’t this time.
Thanks for joining us for our trail walk.
See you soon.
Friday was the beginning of Labor Day weekend. After cleaning the house all morning, I decided I had labored long enough, so I thought I would put in some time at my computer, making a dent in my really neglected blog. However, before I even got started, a phone call came from my daughter Becky, asking is I would be interested in taking a trail walk at the Arboretum with her and her dog Darby. My mind was made up pretty quickly and off we went to the arboretum where we did more walking and talking than picture-taking. Nevertheless, here are a few of the pictures we captured along the trail that afternoon, mostly snapped around Lotus Pond and the edge of Corning Lake. If you have joined me any trail walks in the past, you are sure to recognize the Golden Willow Tree at Lotus Pond, seen here from several angles:
There is something special, almost magical about that tree. It draws people, myself included, to it, and I can’t resist the photo opps. However, there are other interesting sights to see along the trail in the Arboretum. Here are a few more pictures I captured before the end of the afternoon.
The rest of Labor Day weekend was peaceful except for a loud storm in the middle of Saturday night…so loud it woke both of us up. I thought Sunday would be cooler as a result, but unfortunately, when we took a walk at Lake Erie Bluffs on Sunday afternoon, it was still hot and muggy. Happily, visitors at the Bluffs were able to enjoy playing in the water and hiking along the beach.
That sums up our Labor Day weekend. We relaxed as much as possible, labored only a little, and were blessed with plenty of sunshine, only one storm, no flooding, and a lot of reasons to be thankful!
Thanks for stopping by today.
I appreciate your visit to my blog.
After time spent walking the trails at Holden with my friend Lisa, I captured some pictures in the Butterfly Garden before heading home. Strangely enough I didn’t see many butterflies. I was hoping some monarchs would pose for my camera, but didn’t see a single one. However, it was a beautiful day, and I captured some pictures that made me happy.
So, the butterflies were scarce. but the frogs were pleased to pose, and it was an altogether peaceful and pleasant half hour.
What a gift it was to take a trail walk in the Holden Arboretum with my friend Lisa for the second week in a row. It is, without parallel, my favorite place to walk, and I have missed it this summer. As always, I took time to pause at Lotus Pond and capture a few shots of the golden willow tree (above).
From there we walked around Corning Lake where we were lucky to spot a cedar waxwing. I used to see the waxwings near the bridge in Chagrin River Park, but haven’t had a glimpse of them this summer, so I felt really blessed by this one that hung around, almost as if offering us a few photo opps. Isn’t he a beauty? A real gift!
Watch this place for a few more Arboretum pictures as I get time to post them. Hope you have enjoyed these.