Swan Song of the Willows

The willows in Northern Nevada are putting on one last fall foliage performance before they retire for the season. 

Willows, Fay Luther Trail, 11-14-21, Kim Wilkes

One peaceful place to view them is on the Nevada side of the Fay Luther – Job’s Peak Trail in Gardnerville, about halfway between the Fay Luther Trailhead and the Job’s Peak Ranch Trailhead. This is where I ventured on  Sunday, November 14, 2021  to find a ribbon of yellow willows decorating the mossy banks of a tiny creek.  

Creek on the Nevada Side of the Fay Luther – Job’s Peak Trail, 11-14-21, Kim Wilkes

What the creek lacked in size it made up for in personality. Miniature waterfalls tumbled down the hill and through a curtain of gold-colored willows. 

The creek serenaded me as I admired the yellow foliage. 

Willows, Fay Luther – Job’s Peak Trail, 11-14-21, Kim Wilkes

Red deciduous vegetation also added splashes of color. 

Fay Luther – Job’s Peak Trail, 11-14-21, Kim Wilkes
Splashes of Color, Fay Luther – Job’s Peak Trail, 11-14-21, Kim Wilkes

Willows can grow to the size of large bushes or even taller trees. Two of the most common varieties in Nevada are Sierra Willows and Red Willows. They grow on the banks of streams or in wet areas.  

When the red willows lose their leaves for the season, it can look every bit as striking as when their foliage is turning color in the fall.

Red Willow, Fay Luther – Job’s Peak Trail, 11-14-21, Kim Wilkes

The willows won’t have leaves much longer. But they’re singing one sweet swan song before they go away for the winter.  

Fay Luther Trail – Job’s Peak Trail Fall Color Report

Deciduous Vegetation on the Nevada Side of the Trail: At Peak (100%). There should hopefully be some color through at least November 20.  

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