Sunday, November 25, 2012

in search of fall foliage

And I do mean search.  As in, taking a long walk on a beautiful fall afternoon, with the number one goal of finding fall color.

Nearly my 30th fall season in this big state of Texas and I still haven't gotten over the yearning I feel for the fall foliage of my younger years growing up on the east coast.  So I like to take long walks and sometimes long road trips in search of fall foliage.

Behind our house is a greenbelt of sorts with a walking trail.  On a gently sloping hill is a stand of Flame Leaf Sumac trees.  Beautiful reds, oranges, and yellows.

While these may not be foliage, per se, the tuna of the prickly pear cactus (below) provides luscious shades of pink which slowly ripen to deep maroon.  I picked a bucket full of these beauties, by the way, to make my specialty prickly pear cactus juice. Read more about my adventures in prickly pear juice here and here.

Sometimes we don't have to walk too far.  In front of our house we planted several Crepe Myrtles.  What a nice surprise to find they produce red leaves in November.

And in the back yard my husband Sam found and planted trees with the express purpose of proving to his bitchy yearnful wife that Texas can so provide fall color. Like most obnoxious proud Texans he refuses for his state to be outdone by any other state, especially a piss-ant sized state from the northeast.

The tree with the yellow leaves on the left is a Chinese Pistachio. And to it's left and seen closer in the picture on the right is a Big Tooth Maple (surrounded by protective wire to keep the deer from chewing at its bark).  This is the type of maple that grows prolifically in Lost Maples State Natural Area located in the beautiful hill country town of Vanderpool, Texas, one of my most favorite road trip destinations.

As of this weekend Sam and I are celebrating 21 years of marriage.  What better way than with a little fall color appearing annually indoors, too.