Everything You Need To Know About Fall Foliage!
Driving around the area this weekend, I saw more and more color on our trees. I also noticed the colors were not as brilliant this year as they have been in the past. It is almost like the colors are a bit muted. Let me talk a little how how the drought and the cold weekend affect fall colors.
Will The Cool Weather We Saw This Weekend Cause the Leaves To Fall Early?
Every year, the cold shots tend to spur on this question... does the cold cause the leaves to fall? The answer to this question is no. Although there are many factors that can influence when the leaves fall, the greatest influence to when the leaves change color and fall is the length of night. As the nights get longer in fall, the leaves stop producing the chlorophyll. This allows the true colors of the leaves to start to show through. The longer nights begins the process of the leaves changing colors and ultimately falling off the trees.
How Does Drought Affect Fall Colors?
Many of you know that we have been in a drought all summer and it has persisted into fall. Here is the latest assessment from the US Drought Monitor for our area and you can see the drought has been nearly destroyed in Kentucky and a severe drought is only holding on to the northeast part of our area.
Although drought is not the greatest influence for the color change in our leaves it can have a distinct impact on the brilliance of the fall foliage. Both temperature and moisture can affect the brilliance of the fall foliage in particular during late summer and early fall. Ideally we would like warm afternoons and crisp nights for the most brilliant fall displays. In addition, severe drought conditions can lead to less brilliant displays and can delay the color change by a few weeks.
Kentuckiana's Fall Foliage?
I think as you drive around the area, you will notice the drought did have an impact on the brilliance of the fall colors. I think the fall colors still look beautiful, but this won't go down as the best fall foliage we have ever seen. I have put together a group of pictures taken by viewers in our area...
Photo By Erica Dawn Deitsch
Picture By Melissa Farangiz Huggett
Photo By Tom King at McNeely Lake
In case you forgot, here is a look at the normal peak time for fall foliage in our area. Notice most of our area peaks in late October.
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