Fall colors appear around Lake Superior • Earth.com

Last update: October 28th, 2020 at 3:00 pm

Today’s Image of the Day from NASA Earth Observatory features some of the earliest fall colors emerging in forests across Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan.

After a period of cooler weather, fall foliage began to appear throughout these regions in late September.

The photograph captures the area surrounding Lake Superior, including aspen, birch, maple, and basswood trees.

Deciduous trees begin to change colors in the fall as they lose chlorophyll, the molecule that plants use to synthesize food. When green chlorophyll fades, carotenoids and other leaf pigments can start to shine through.

The U.S. Forest Service explains that certain species of trees produce specific fall colors. For example, oak trees usually turn red or brown, while aspen trees turn golden yellow.

The image was obtained on September 22, 2020 by the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) on NOAA-20.

Image Credit: NASA Earth Observatory 

By Chrissy Sexton, Earth.com Staff Writer

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