Monday, October 6, 2014

What colors do various trees’ leaves turn each autumn?

Ever go on a hike during autumn and wonder what kind of tree sported such brilliantly colored leaves?

Depending on the tree and where you live, that might not be a problem. Every kid in Wisconsin and Vermont can identify a maple tree, and just about every child can tell you when you’re looking at an oak. Still, there are plenty of other trees out there that most of us can’t name.

You may want to bring along a tree guidebook the next time you hit the trail during autumn. Part of the fun of a fall hike can be identifying the different colored leaves that wash across the horizon like a watercolor painting.

To help make your identification of the tree easier, here’s a list of what color various common trees turn each fall.

Aspen (amber)
Balsam poplar (yellow)
Beech (yellow)
Birch (yellow)
Black cherry (yellowish red)
Black walnut (yellow)
Box elder (yellow)
Cottonwood (gold)
Elm (yellow)
Hackberry (yellow)
Honey locust (yellow)
Ironwood (dull yellow)
Locust (buttery yellow)
Pin cherry (bright yellow)
Poplar (yellow)
Red mulberry (yellow)
Silver maple (pale yellow)

Black maple (orange, though also can be yellow or red)
Chestnut oak (brownish orange)
Hickory (gold to orange)
Mountain maple (bright orange, though also can be red)
Oak (orange)
Sassafras (reddish-orange)
Sugar maple (brilliant orange)

Black gum (deep crimson)
Dogwood (deep crimson)
Grapevines (bold crimson)
Northern pin oak (bright scarlet)
Northern red oak (bright red)
Red maple (scarlet)
Scarlet oak (fiery red)
Sourwood (deep crimson)
Sumac (deep crimson)
Sweet gum (fiery red)

Cinquefoil (purple)
Dogwood (purple)
Virginia creeper (deep burgundy)
White ash (deep maroon)
Witch hazel (purple)

Burr oak (brown, though also can be yellow)
Butternut (brown, though also can be yellow)
Swamp white oak (brown)
White oak (brown, though also can be red)

Basswood (olive)

Learn about trail guidebooks available in the Hittin’ the Trail series.