Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Escarpment black cherry tree turned yellow

with 27 comments

Compared to places much further north, central Texas is too warm for a lot of colorful fall foliage. Still, we do get some, and its predominant color is yellow. That’s true for the escarpment black cherry treePrunus serotina var. eximia. We found this specimen at the Doeskin Ranch in Burnet County when we drove out there on November 24th hoping to find some bright autumn leaves. We weren’t disappointed.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 2, 2018 at 4:24 PM

27 Responses

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  1. That tree was a beautiful find!

    Lavinia Ross

    December 2, 2018 at 5:03 PM

    • It was, and we found other examples of botanical color as well, so the 45-minute drive out to Doeskin Ranch was well worth it.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 2, 2018 at 8:13 PM

  2. That is how it is here. Except for poison oak, our native fall color is limited to yellow. Exotic species provide the oranges and reds. I just posted pictures of it on Saturday, and will post more next Saturday.


    December 2, 2018 at 9:57 PM

  3. Pure gold.


    December 3, 2018 at 4:24 AM

  4. How beautiful 😊

    Nomzi Kumalo

    December 3, 2018 at 8:42 AM

  5. One year, a large cherry tree on the place outside Kerrville went down in a storm. Thanks to a friend with a tractor and a front-loader, we got the tree out of the woods and to a mill to be slabbed. We stacked it under tarps and a lean-to, where it cured for two years before becoming some lovely furniture. The wood was as beautiful as the leaves.

    After reading the linked article, I think there’s a chance it might have been escarpment black cherry: every detail seems right, including the fact that it was growing in a place where it got more sunlight than most of the area. Its fruit usually was plentiful, too; the neighbor up the hill sometimes made jelly from it. Whichever cherry it was, it’s a fact that it was one of the few dependable trees for fall color on the place, and you’ve captured that color perfectly.


    December 3, 2018 at 8:44 AM

    • I’ve heard of people using cherry wood to make furniture. Maybe I’ve even seen some. You’ve gone a lot farther, following the process from fallen tree to furniture over a span of at least two years. Then there’s the jelly the neighbor made. And from what you say at the end, you’ve even seen the tree sporting its colorful fall foliage. I’d say you’re much more familiar with this species than I. While we drove to Burnet County to see this specimen, in other years I’ve found a few right in my part of Austin. As you’ve heard me say so may times: I’ll take all the colorful native fall foliage I can get.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 3, 2018 at 5:35 PM

  6. Very Nice Steve! Never thought of Central Texas not getting much Fall color!

    Reed Andariese

    December 4, 2018 at 6:32 PM

    • Down here we’re way south of your northern New Jersey and my (when growing up) Long Island. The great swathes of forest fall foliage people enjoy up north are lacking here.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 4, 2018 at 7:54 PM

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