Friday, September 21, 2012

Virginia Creeper

If the cooler temperatures here in the Shire
hadn't indicated autumn's approach,
then the red, yellow, and orange leaves that are beginning to appear 
in the trees certainly would have.

Our neighborhood is planted with dozens of crepe myrtle trees,
and I noticed yesterday the first colors of fall showing in them.
Crepe myrtle leaves have just started to turn a vivid orange this fall 
which is quite eye-catching.
When I saw that yesterday, I figured the leaves of the Virginia Creeper vines
must not be too far behind.
So I went exploring in the forested area behind our house.
And there they were:

There color is more of a blushy pink right now,
although the longer the season goes, the more brilliant red they will become.

Many people confuse Virginia Creeper with poison ivy,
but it is not at all the same. Poison ivy has three leaves, 
Virginia Creeper has five and they have toothed edges.
One thing the two vines do have in common is that insects enjoy munching on them.
The insects that lunched on these Virginia Creeper leaves
loved them so much, they chewed out little heart shapes:

That's probably the insect version of  'playing with your food.'
Tomorrow, a couple of more thoughts on Virginia Creeper.

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