Photo by Phillis Bierman
As this oak tree proudly announces, fall is officially here. According to the U.S. Forest Service, dots of color are showing up throughout the Shawnee National Forest in Southern Illinois. The sassafras, sumac and dogwoods are redder, while the yellow and brown tulip poplar and sycamore leaves are crumbling and falling to the forest floor. The maple trees are beginning to show a touch of red and orange. The overall color change is at about 30 percent.