Seeing (Spring) Red

Female American Sweetgum flowers, smaller than a dime so far. These mature into green, golf ball sized fruit balls, eventually drying to dark brown.

Ailanthus buds.

Male Eastern Cottonwood flowers.

Red is a popular color in spring time. The pigment anthocyanin protects tender plant parts: buds, new leaves, and young fruits from the the UV rays of the Sun. Poison Ivy is a classic example. The young leaves above will quickly mature into green ones.

Wee baby White Oak leaves.

Interesting that some galls are also initially red.


There’s big nature jamboree at Green-Wood Cemetery this Sunday as part of City Nature Challenge. It promises to be fun for the whole family, except of course the dog, who’ll enjoy the time off (with Netflix and chili).

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