Welcome, Fall

By Ulrike Axen

Wow, we have had it all this week – summer heat, on-going dry weather, late fall-like frost – and now a more seasonal cool rainy day.

The vegetation is showing signs of this mixed-up changing season. The grasses are drying out early, making all the late summer yellow flowers look washed out, but the trees are still mostly green. Ash and birch trees have a splash of yellow here and there and there is a spectacular maple tree in full shades of red by the Ordway shelter.

It is a nice time to go for a walk along the Bog boardwalk; the cattails are showing their signature brown seed heads, and there is a special treat waiting – lavender turtleheads!

Turtlehead.

Found in moist areas, these flowers are named so because of their distinctive shape. Other flowers to enjoy currently are all kinds of asters, jewelweed, and the last of the goldenrods. It is a great time to see the fall flowers before the trees start their show!

Ulrike Axen is a Minnesota Master Naturalist volunteer.

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