Fall Leaf Colours

No one can deny that Autumn is a colourful time of year in this part of Canada and the eastern US. As deciduous trees get ready for the coming winter, their chlorophyll production ceases and the green slowly leaches out of a tree’s leaves. As the green disappears, the other colours in the leaves become present. These colours were always there, but the green chlorophyll masked them. It is the anthocyanin and carotenoids in the tree’s leaves which determine the colours that will flame forth in the fall once the chlorophyll is gone.

While it sounds like a complicated process, the beauty of it is clear to anyone who has taken a stroll in the fall to admire the changing colours of the trees. From yellow, to golden oranges, to fiery reds and browns, tree canopies are transformed. It is our last blast of colour before winter blankets everything in white. And you should go out and admire it, before it is gone.

Look for these brilliant colours from these trees;

Fall Leaf Colours of Trees


Birch leaves turn yellow in the fall

This birch’s leaves are a brilliant yellow in the fall

  • tamarack (only coniferous tree which drops its needles in winter)
  • beech
  • birch
  • black cherry
  • black walnut
  • elm
  • ginkgo biloba
  • honey locust
  • Norway maple
  • pawpaws
  • poplars
  • silver maple
  • trembling aspen
  • tulip trees
  • weeping willow (greenish-yellow)
  • witch hazel


Golden hue shines

A golden hue brightens dark skies in Autumn light

  • American beech
  • large-toothed aspen
  • quaking aspen
  • sassafras (red through orange)
  • shagbark hickory
  • sugar maple


Red sumac blazes against a backdrop of yellow

Red sumac blazes against a yellow backdrop

  • Autumn Blaze maple
  • dogwood
  • eastern redbud
  • hawthorn
  • Japanese maples
  • red maples
  • red oaks
  • serviceberry
  • sugar maples (red, yellows and oranges)
  • sumac


Oak leaves have a brown tinge in the fall

These oak leaves have a brown tinge in the fall once the green fades

  • American basswood (yellow to brown)
  • cottonwood trees
  • Crimson King maples
  • hackberry (dull yellow to brown)
  • sycamore
  • white oak

What is your favourite fall colour?

Published by
October 22, 2015 1:15 pm