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The colors of autumn are different every year. Chlorophyll is what makes leaves green (and enables plants to use sunlight to create their own food). During the autumn, as days become shorter and temperatures drop, chlorophyll production slows to a stop and the other pigments in the leaves get a chance to show themselves. Shorter days and low temperatures (above freezing) at night boost the production of the red pigments, producing a more dazzling display, but an early frost weakens the colors.
According the the US Forest Service the most spectacular autumn color displays occur when there is a succession of warm, sunny autumn days and cool, crisp, but not freezing, nights. In addition, the best color occurs when the previous spring and summer have been wet and warm; preventing the trees from being stressed due to lack of water.
This photo was taken during an autumn with perfect conditions for spectacular color.
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