Thursday, November 6, 2014

Fall foliage update

Fall colors are fading fast in the mountains of Virginia, with almost all areas past peak and many leaves turning brown and dropping. Lower elevations and those sheltered from wind still provide pockets of color.

This week, the Piedmont and Coastal Plain are ablaze with color, so it's a good time for a colorful drive east. Most of central Virginia is at or close to peak color, with gold to orange tones predominating. Oaks, which turn deep red to rust, vary from mostly green to fully colored.

In the Coastal Plain, the colors are more muted golds and yellows, but they are still lovely. Bright red sumacs and deep red dogwoods provide an especially pretty contrast along forest edges. Sweetgums provide an interesting palette of orange, red, purple, and gold, often on the same tree. Oaks in the east are still predominately green, but their deep jewel tones will be evident soon.

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