Monday, October 10, 2005

sycamore fade

The sycamore (Acer pseudoplatanus) is said to have no significant autumn colour - the leaves are normally still green when they turn dry and crinkled and biscuit-coloured. You may not be very delighted by these pictures, but the architecture of a crown made from these elements is subtly impressive and once you've noticed it you'll want to keep looking out for it.

The crisping happens on the outermost leaves first, the October air glazes the trees leaving them still and burly - Botticelli period. After many hours a cloth's blind buffing communicates, as by hand-heat, with the inner core; a serpentine patina resides in pebble and tsuba.

(The other time I notice sycamores is in May when the leaves are fresh and small, a very pure green, and they overlap each other in tiers creating a sumptuous layered effect.)

These leaves (of London Plane) are flashier, closer to the stereotype. Trolls make cigars out of them; at night you can hear the crackling.



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