Wednesday Vignette: Golden Blanket

Ginkgo biloba trees — which have been around for 270 million years, have no living relatives, and can live individually for 3,000 years — lose all their leaves virtually at once, triggered by a hard frost and who knows what other signals echoing across vast millennia. The second of November this year, when I happened to visit the Path of Life in Windsor, Vermont, was that day for the young ginkgo straddling the lawn and the bramble swath above the Connecticut river.

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“… the ginkgo trees
That stand along the walk drop all their leaves
In one consent, and neither to rain nor to wind
But as though to time alone: the golden and green
Leaves litter the lawn today, that yesterday
Had spread aloft their fluttering fans of light.” — Howard Nemerov, from “The Consent”

Wednesday Vignette is brought to us by Flutter & Hum.

4 comments

  1. Ginkos are such gorgeous trees! Every autumn, I think there is no purer yellow than the fall color of Genko trees. I had no idea they lose all their leaves at once, but it makes sense now that you say it. All of a sudden, they are bare. A good reminder to take that photo when you see it. Wait another day and it might be a lost opportunity.

  2. These used to be a common street tree in the Santa Clara Valley. There was a sidewalk I used to walk down on my way to junior high school that would get so covered by ginkgo leaves that the pavement was no visible. I thought that if I did not need to turn off to go to school, I could follow the bright yellow sidewalk all the way to the Emerald City.

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