Yesterday morning there was a real surprise waiting when I woke up, the first snow had landed during the night! Whole September has been really warm and deciduous plants haven´t even dropped their leaves yet so this happened unusually early this year. Permanent snow is still to be expected because the ground was green by noon… This post shows how the change of the seasons is recognizable in our surroundings and introduces you how atmospheric the fall is here in Hossa.
As the temperatures get colder and the amount of daylight reduces, photosynthesis ends and deciduous plants start preparing for the winter. Chlorophyll breaks down into different compounds making other colors become visible – this creates the beautiful colors of autumn known as “ruska” here in Finland. Ponds and lakes become surrounded by bright colors and evergreen pine trees are not dominating the landscape anymore as red and orange, purple and different shades of yellow bring their own nuances. Altogether the whole atmosphere is “autumny” and quite silent, ready to rest in a way.
In one of the pictures it seems like the rock in the forefront is painted with red paint, actually it´s a single-celled algae. The oldest forms of life on this planet have been organisms similar to this, usually found in the roughest of conditions. The ferrous red color is a defense mechanism against the harmful UV radiation of the sun, a feature that has developed during the time when our planet didn´t have its now existing ozone layer that protects it from the harmful rays. There´s always some very interesting and intriguing things around in nature if you keep your eyes open, this very old and actually quite conspicuous algae is a great example of that!
Swallows left and began their long migration couple of weeks ago. For us, this is one of the first signs that summers back is broken, there´s no heatwave to be expected after that anymore! Swallows actually bring us summer also; when they arrive during the spring, there´s a saying that there´s not a single day until summer from now. They make their nests under the eaves of our houses so we are allowed to follow their doings through the whole summer, one of the simple joys of the countryside. Their nesting went well this summer so there were flocks of dozens of birds having their flight shows and concerts above the lakes during the last warm evenings of August.
Unfortunately the mushroom season ended up being quite miserable this year, mainly because lack of rain I think, but after a search there was usually a basket of tasty delicacies of the wild to take home. The main season is over but there´s still mushrooms to be found until winter. Some mushrooms of the Boletus and Leccinum families on the right.
Seasons change and the cycle goes on, bird hunting is on at the moment so I´ve spent time wandering in the forests with my dog, Ruska. Checking the weather forecast for the following morning is part of my daily doings because if the weather is favorable, it triggers the black grouses to arrive in certain areas for their mating display and this provides a good chance to catch one.
Autumn up here in Hossa is a great time of year for many outdoor activities. The stillness of the forest is incredible and there´s not too many other people hiking on the trails or fishing on the lakes for example so peaceful adventures in the wild are guaranteed!