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In the fall of 2010, we decided to line the back fence with trees to create a privacy screen. Our favorite would be the Katsura tree (Cercidiphyllum japonicum). I love that it’s quite different from other trees in the area, in just about every way possible. In spring, it starts out with a magnificent blend of colors – purple, pink, bronze, orange, yellow, andΒ chartreuse. Eventually, the foliage does green out as it matures, but the shade of green is something quite different, being of a muted grayish green. When they reach their full size, the heart-shaped leaves seem to hang vertically from their horizontal stems. Come fall, the colors change to bright gold and orange, and although I haven’t noticed it, possibly due to our cold temperatures, I’ve read that the fall foliage smells like caramel. Because the colors are so different from everything else growing in the vicinity, no matter what time of year it is, the color pops against any background, be it the fence, the sky, or the nearby foliage of other trees. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.

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