Fall colors in Midwest spotted from space as autumn arrives
The Autumn Equinox came on Sept. 22, marking the first official day of fall.
Areas around Lake Superior could be seen with pops of color.
The region is rich with aspen, birch, maple, basswood, and other deciduous hardwood trees, according to NASA.
The National Weather Service (NWS) forecast office in Duluth, Minn. said Sunday that colors are near peak across much of the region.
According to the U.S. Forest Service, certain species of trees produce certain colors.
Oaks generally turn red, brown, or russet; aspen and yellow-poplar turn golden.
Maples differ by species, as red maple turns brilliant scarlet; sugar maple, orange-red; and black maple, yellow.
“Some leaves of some species, such as the elms simply shrivel up and fall, exhibiting little color other than drab brown,” the agency notes.
There are also three factors that influence autumn leaf color: leaf pigments, length of night, and weather.
“The timing of color changes and the onset of falling leaves is primarily regulated by the calendar as nights become longer,” the Forest Service notes. “None of the other environmental influences – such as temperature, rainfall, food supply – are as unvarying as the steadily increasing length of night during autumn.”