Fall has arrived, after a summer that never quite lived up to hopes for full post-pandemic "normalcy". The outlook for the foreseeable future is still clouded by uncertainties and the constant barrage of conflicting information on an endless array of issues can be mind-numbing. But, if we step aside for a little while from the cacophony and look around at the natural world, it looks...pretty normal. The changing rhythm of the seasons prevails, and cooler days encourage a walk around the Tawes Garden paths to observe it.
In early October, late bloomers flaunt their colors in still-warm sunlight--bright Jewelweed by a stream, rusty pink Sedum and Obedient Plant on a slope. Trees and shrubs unveil only the first glimpses of their Fall display in the precocious red of Sour Gum leaves or the subtle tapestry shades of Smoke Bush. The display will expand, intensify, and linger deep into the season; it will be late November before the russet leaves of the young Hop Hornbeam trees on the patio fade and yellow Maple leaves begin to carpet the ground. Later yet, in December, the Garden presents a muted but still vibrant panorama as the natural year comes full circle again.