Guide to Fall, Part 2: Prettiest Trees
The last column, “Guide to Fall” was focused on preparing for cooler weather, fewer daylight hours, and some of my favorite autumn routes. Since the next three weeks will represent the height of fall running in the Boston area, as the peak colors slowly drift their way south, indulge me a bit so I can share with you some of my favorite “trees” in the area. These are trees that I will go out of my way to see in certain seasons, like the blossoms that peak for about a week every April around the Brookline Reservoir.
Brookline, as an older suburb, benefits from a healthy population of beautiful, older maple trees and other specimen trees that have been well cared for by the town and residents. A few of my favorite trees and areas to enjoy the fall colors are:
- Gorgeous Copper Beech trees, at the corner of Gate House Rd. and Essex Rd., in the Chestnut Hill historic district area.
- Longwood Mall. Just off Kent St., this green, flanked by Beech Rd. and Chatham St. has some beautifully preserved trees, of a number of varieties
- Two roads in Brookline are flanked by rows of Cypress trees: Lowell Rd., near the high school, and the section of Penniman Rd., just south of Dean Rd., bordering Eliot Park.
- The Cottage Farm local historic district, framed by Lenox St., Euston St., and Ivy St.
- Toxteth St. and Brook St. have particularly attractive canopies
- The leaves on the trees along Strathmore Rd., in the section just west of Waldstein Park, turn a particular shade of red, very synchronously
- Waldstein Park and Eliot Park have graceful landscapes with trees that produce some terrific colors
- Check out some of the specimen trees at the Olmsted Historic site
- A few intimate “squares” or “greens” in Brookline also provide beautiful splashes of color, notably: Mason Square, between Cottage Farm Rd. and Essex St.; Knyvet Square, between St. Paul St. and Amory St.; and the small green off Linden St./Linden Pl.
The Commonwealth Ave. Mall and the Emerald Necklace both show their best over the next few weeks and are worth making the extra effort to get to. Another hidden gem is the VFW Parkway, which, despite its heavy car traffic, features sidewalks and a good shoulder.
I’d welcome your thoughts on any areas I might have missed!
Mark Lowenstein is an avid recreational runner, having logged thousands of miles across dozens of Massachusetts communities over the past 25 years. He lives in Brookline with his wife and two children. His book “Great Runs in Brookline and Vicinity” can be purchased here.