Speaking of Green

April 29, 2020  •  Leave a Comment

Shenandoah SpringShenandoah SpringEarly spring color in the Blue Ridge Mountains at Shenandoah National Park creates interesting patterns in lime green. Dappled late-day light enhances the effect. (From Skyline Drive near Rockfish Gap, Virginia) There's something magical about spring.

Winter's darkness and often-dreary, monochromatic landscapes are transformed into something completely different - seemingly overnight. While the days have been growing longer since late December and the sun has been creeping ever higher in the sky, these things happen rather quietly and unassumingly until suddenly all those added minutes and gently climbing temperatures combine to reach a glorious crescendo. All at once the earth is giddy and impatient to awaken.

A stretch of divine, warm days arrives and you look out the window to see something that wasn't there yesterday: shade! The trees got together for a little confab and decided "today's the day!" Presto! 

If springtime were a color, of course it would have to be green. As leaves bud and then unfurl, the lush new growth paints lawns, gardens, hillsides and forests in a rich variety of greens. How to describe all those beautiful hues? Green in the landscape is never more lovely - and more varied - than in the spring.

Lime. Chartreuse. Forest. Sage. Juniper. Fern. Kelly. Hunter. Mint.

In the Rocky Mountains, we're a little late to the party. Higher altitudes and a dry climate will do that. But even here at this time of year we speak green, emphatically and beautifully! The runoff will finish making its way down the mountains and all too soon those greens will necessarily bid us farewell as the dry summer days settle in. For now, though, I revel in it: the language of green. The language of spring.      


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