Cozy sweaters, wood fires, warm apple cider… what’s not to love about fall? Also called autumn or harvest (after the harvest moon), fall is a favorite season for many of your EI friends. In tribute, we’ve culled some of our favorite, little-known facts, just for you!
Despite what most people think, leaves don’t turn orange, yellow, and red in the fall. In fact, they’re always orange, red and yellow. It’s just that these colors are overpowered by the bright green produced by chlorophyll during the brighter, longer days. Weaker sun for fewer hours decreases chlorophyll production and lets their natural colors shine. It’s thought that catching a falling fall leaf brings a full month of good luck the prior year, if you believe that sort of thing.
More Facebook users change their status from “single” to “in a relationship” in the fall than in any other month (more break ups happen in summer, in case you were wondering). This might explain why more babies are born in September than any other month of the year. Bonus – autumn babies are more likely to live to be 100 years old than babies born in any other month!
Run for the Border
Monarch butterflies embark on a serious journey every fall, flying up to 2,500 miles to find warmer weather. Monarchs who summer east of the Rockies migrate all the way to Mexico; those coming from the west of the Rockies wind up in Pacific Grove, California. Either way, they migrate to the exact same trees every year – remarkable, considering they’re not the same butterflies (monarchs only live 2-6 weeks).
The Real Yin and Yang
During the autumnal equinox, which takes place September 22 this year, the Earth’s equator is perfectly aligned with the sun, ensuring equal day and night hours. This means we’ll have exactly as much daylight as darkness (12 hours each). The word equinox actually means “equal night”.
It’s All Greek to Us
Legend has it, we can thank Greek goddess Persephone for these crisp, cool autumn months. Snatched by Hades to be his underground bride and tricked into eating the food of the underworld, young Persephone was destined to spend her days with the dead. Luckily, her mother, Demeter, struck a deal that allowed her daughter to spend six months in the underworld and six months above ground every year. Sadness overtook the Earth when the young beauty was gone, resulting in the fall and winter months.