We are often asked when is the best time to come and see Autumn colour at Marks Hall. In truth, the environmental conditions that influence the colours of Autumn are varied, and can include light levels, temperatures and rainfall. The timing is therefore difficult to predict.

This can lead to a daily and weekly changing palette of striking colours visible across the Arboretum. Leaf colour changes as Chlorophyll, the pigment responsible for the green colour of leaves starts to break down, revealing other pigments of red, purple, yellow or orange.

Some of our early stars to watch for in September include the lovely Katsura (Cercidiphyllum japonicum), which can be found in Millennium Walk alongside the upper lake. Its rich Autumn colour is complemented by the smell of candyfloss as the leaves fall.

Also to look out for in Millennium Walk is the golden, yellow hints of the Birch trees (Betula utlisi var jacquemontii). Later in the season the maples in our Japanese Maple Glade, a newly planted area, show fiery red tones, which are not to be missed. So, the best time to visit? Frequently – get your boots on, wrap up and get out there!