Fall has just started and I confess I love it. It is the ideal season to re-start preparing my cakes and hot chocolates in many ways, but above all it is the foliage season.
Foliage is a French word that indicates a natural process through which the leaves of many species of trees that live in temperate zones lose their green coloring to dye in warm colors during autumn, finally detaching from the trees and leaving them completely bare during the coldest months. About 25% of the tree species that lose their leaves during winter (deciduous trees) goes through this process.
When the days become shorter and colder, these trees stop producing chlorophyll and the leaves’ green color disappears. At this point we begin to see the shades of red, yellow, brown and purple: these are pigments that characterize other substances that actually have been always present in the leaves but were blocked by the presence of chlorophyll.
If you are determined to observe the beauties of the colored forests you must first of all identify the nearest areas where the right species of trees live. And you will not be alone, because this phenomenon invokes thousands of photographers and enthusiasts every year.
I never miss the chance to go to the mountains during autumn to savor the smell of moist, fresh woods and photograph the colors and the beauties of the landscape.
Last year I went to observe the foliage in Trentino-Alto Adige (Italy), specifically in Val di Non. It’s a beautiful area for this activity because not only the woods but also many kinds of apple trees change their color in autumn. There are miles of apple tree plantations whose leaves range from yellow to dark purple. In addition Tovel Lake is particularly impressive in this period.
Accomodation: B&B in Revò, near Cles (Agritur Vista Lago).
For the fall foliage in Lombardy you can visit the regional park of Montevecchia (Lecco). In addition to offering a breathtaking panorama of Brianza, the place is also interesting because it was inhabited by the Celts, which left clues of their presence on the territory. It is assumed that they also shaped the 3 hills of the park as pyramids. In the park you can also visit the Sanctuary of the Blessed Virgin of Carmel.
Foliage is a suitable activity also for children and those who love manual work: they can pick up twigs and leaves to make creative projects. Here some ideas:
Where to go
The ideal places for the foliage are North America, Europe, Japan and China. You just need to find the suitable woods.
It depends on the area and climate conditions of that specific year, let’s say from late September to mid-November.