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Beginning and End

San Ramon/Dublin (12/1/21) Salil Bhatt

California’s autumn begins and ends with two very similar trees … Quaking aspen and Frémont cottonwood.

While color spotting along Alamo Creek between San Ramon and Dublin, Salil Bhatt was at first mistaken when he identified Frémont cottonwood as being Quaking aspen, but after checking references realized his error.

They each have heart-shaped leaves and are different types of poplars, but they grow in different ranges.

Quaking aspen, Populus tremuloides, grow between 3,000 and 10,000′ in elevation. Whereas, Frémont cottonwood, Populus fremontii, are seen only up to 6,500′.

So, while aspen begin the peak, cottonwood end it.

  • Sunol Regional Wilderness (196′) – Peak to Past Peak, GO NOW, You Almost Missed It.
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