Friday, September 17, 2010
and open to Her Wisdom."
10th Day of the 10th Lunar Cycle
Ruled by Hera
Lunar Tree Cycle of Muin/Vine
16th Day of the Celtic Tree
Month of Muin/Vine
Moon Phase: waxing Half
Moon sets: 1:29AM EDST
Moon rises: 4:31PM EDST
Moon in the Cardinal Earth
Sign of Capricorn
Rhiannon's Cycle of the Moon
Lunar Meditation: The message
of the blood.
Sun in Virgo
Sunrise: 7:02AM EDST
Sunset: 7:27PM EDST
Solar Question of the Day: "Which
of your skills needs to be honed at
Lughnasadh (Gwyl Awst) Quarter
of the Year
September 17th, 2010
Here it is - Freya's Day - Venus Day - Day of Sharing and Relationships..... and in our current society known as TGIF. But is it really that any more? What with people work every day of the week, the promise of time off does not exist as it once did. Today there are minor magickal energies for friendship.
Healthy Witch Tip of the Day
Eat a handful of fruit and vegetables a day - In one study people who ate four or five servings scored higher on cognitive tests than those who consumed less than one serving.
[From Ellen Dugan's "Autumn Equinox"]
Why do the leaves change colors anyway? Deciduous trees change their leaf color because food production inside the leaf slows and then finally stops. This decline of food production is thought to be instinctively programmed into the trees to begin as the daylight hours decrease and the nights grow cooler, which means there is less energy for food making. In the simplest terms, inside the leaves of the tree is a sort of food factory that produces chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is the green pigment that helps the cells in the leaves capture the energy of the sun and use it with water and carbon dioxide gas from the air to produce sugars, the tree's food supply. During this food production process, called photosynthesis, some of the chlorophyll is constantly being broken down. However, during the growing seasons of spring and summer, more chlorophyll is constantly created to replace what is lost.
There is another group of coloring pigment within the leaves called carotenes. These are yellow, brown, and tones of orange. As long as there is chlorophyll present, those carotene colors are hidden by bright green. (Incidentally, these carotenoid color pigments also give yellow and orange colors to plants like carrots, corn, and daffodils.) As chlorophyll production in the leaves begins to taper off in the fall and the chlorophyll supply starts to slow down, the green mask begins to fade, revealing the vibrant shades produced by the carotene pigments.
Red is probably the most sought-after autumn leaf color and this is caused by the pigment called anthocyanins. This color develops when the sugar created in the leaves becomes tapped there. In these leaves a layer of cells grows across the point where the leaf joins the branch and it then seals the leaf off. As the trapped sugar breaks down, the red anthocyanin pigments are produced. There is more trapped sugar to produce those brilliant reds (and all other shades of oranges and gold) when we have a combination of lots of sunny autumn days and cool nighttime temperatures.
This is why the old-timers believed that a rainy autumn 'washed the colors out of the leaves' - when, in truth, to get really spectacular foliage colors, you need lots of sunlight and cool evening temperature to produce the best display. So lots of rain means lots of clouds and not a lot of sunlight, hence the less brilliant colors.
The enchanting autumn beauty of our American deciduous forests results from the decline of photosynthesis. As the chlorophyll vanishes within the leaves it reveals xanthophyll, carotene, and other bright pigments the leaves have kept hidden all during the growing season. Here is another lesson from the masked Green Man; even the leaves of the trees wear masks that hide the spectacular colors of autumn. When the 'mask' pf green chlorophyll quietly slips away in the autumn, the magick is revealed beneath.