Sorry if you’re tired of fall color, but we tree-dwellers wait all year for this!
Bet you thought we’d say squirrels. Hickory wanted me to say squirrels. He wants us to feature squirrels as much as possible during the Blogging From A to Z Challenge, but we got over that a few years ago.
We enjoy a good scamper in the Red Maple trees in our neighborhood, which have been a steady red to pink the last month, looking like they are still blooming.
It’s the seeds, the samaras. This is a name given to any winged fruit. When the seeds are ripe, the ‘wings’ dry and are quite papery. They loosen and spin to the ground, and if there is a wind, are carried far from the parent tree, giving them a better chance of growing themselves. It’s part of nature’s plan to make the earth green! When we woke up yesterday, all those little winged Red Maple seeds were floating to the ground–the proof being the humans just laid down mulch yesterday.
Of course we got busy, too and nipped off some of the bunches.
Don’t ask me why, it’s just a squirrel urge. And sometimes we eat the seeds.
But we can’t eat all of them and the samaras of course will go everywhere and send up maple seedlings in the most unlikely places.
We’re under canopies of color this weekend. Can you tell from the color what species this might be? I tell you, it’s a good skill for a squirrel to have during nut gathering season.
Miz Flora assures us this is the peak of the fall color for our D.C. suburbs. So give me your guesses, and get out to enjoy the trees in person, or in squirrel!
As one of our readers comments, we squirrels aren’t wasting time scouting under this tree—a Red Maple. No nuts to gather there, just lots of gorgeous leaves.
We’ll leave those to you humans to gather as you are wont to do each fall. Squirrels haven’t figures out why.
Have you noticed these clumps of…things?
This is a tough one, so give it your best shot!
Sorry I’m so slow today. The later hours for daylight are throwing off my schedule. June 21 is right around the corner!. So if you took a close look, you might have picked up a clue.
Maple samaras–seeds–cover the mulch here as well. The clumps are the stems which hung the samaras! Really. I have no idea how they get rolled together like a western tumbleweed, but they do, and once they are, they stay together.
This Red Male tree is a street tree, large and mature, planted back in the 1970’s. Which explains why there are so many samaras and samara stems.
And baby maple trees!