After nearly two weeks of sun, rain, and fluctuating temperatures the woods look completely different! Everywhere high and low the beech trees have sent forth new delicate leaves, there are new unruly ground covers, and the flowers have changed. During my last walk, the bare tree branches still left the trails exposed to sun, cloud, and rain; but now a newly green and leafy canopy has enclosed the trail above and on all sides! There are now curtains upon curtains of translucent light green beech tree leaves in every direction.
There was a light rain all day yesterday, ok to enjoy the outdoors, but good idea to bring an umbrella just in case. The overcast sky created a beautiful diffused light. Walking through the woods surrounded by beech leaves was such a different experience from only two weeks ago. The leafy canopy not only offers some protection from the raindrops, but the leaf cover makes the woods sound softer. In the rain there was the soft tapping sounds of the raindrops falling onto the leaves; it sounded the same as rain on a camp tent, evoking a relaxing and cozy feeling of tent time (as long as the tent is keeping the occupants dry of course!).
As we approached the area where the owls had been spotted in previous weeks and looked up, we realized the walks with easy bird watching were over, at least until after the fall. Leaves layer each other and mostly the birds’ presence is only indicated by their songs.
As it was late in the day and the light was fading it wasn’t a long walk. A distant twinkle from a neighborhood lamp beyond the leaves and it was time to go home.
Paulownia tomentosa, also known as Empress Tree – exotic species native to Asia (according to the online Invasive Plant Atlas of the United States)