Nature is dressing for the holidays a bit early this year. Pick your holiday–this branch can remind you of the cranberries of Thanksgiving or the red of Christmas.
Here’s a close-up. These are crab apples. Unlike the trees some of you may remember from childhood, these fruits won’t fall. They’ll stay on the tree until the birds eat them.
And it depends upon how severe a winter it is. Some years these are gone before the first of January. Others, they linger until almost March. Robins, primarily, find them tasty, but occasionally I’ll have a flock of cedar waxwings or some other migrants come through.
Because they are sour, the birds prefer them to “mellow” on the trees a bit. But if winter is harsh and food is scarce, these are very visible and readily available to the fruit eaters.