Thursday, July 30, 2015

Leaves showing promise

Fall colors are popping up north; first flecks around here.

Leaves showing promise


We still have a few weeks to go around here before the trees begin to show their true autumn colors.

But in a development that may bode well for that's to come our way, to our north the leaves are showing signs of out-performing the 2011 varieties for color and intensity.

That's the report from Gale Ross at the Maine Deparatment of Conservation, where the trees are as much as 45 percent of the way toward peak color.

She figures the Maine woods are somewhat behind, but from what she's seen so far, she's expecting a comeback year.

As was the case in Pennsylvania and elsewhere, the 2011 show was on the muted side up in Moose Country in 2011. “There really wasn’t a good sason last year,” said Ross. "We were muted, and extended."

The Midatlantic and Northeast, blessed with some of the world's most-dramatic autumn foliage, managed to dodge the horrid droughts that scorched the Midwest this summer. And the autumn weather evidently has been cooperating.

We have had a sequence of cool nights, and they are important for the complex physical processes that force the prosaic greens to yield to the flamboyant carotenoids, the stuff of carrots and pumpkins, and the anthocyanins that give apples and cranberries their blushes.

The latest long-range outlooks continue to show near-normal temperatures well into October, with no prospects for a color-muting warm spell. Nor do we see any threat of leaf-killing freezes.

If you want to get a jump on the season,  according to the most-recent reports you should be able to see color now in the Catskills of New York and Alleghenies of Pennsylvania.

The more-adventurous might consider a drive to Vermont or the White Mountains -- the spectacular Franconia Notch area being one of our favorites.

The seasons are quite variable in timing and quality, and you would be well-advised to check on conditions before you go.

This site reports on conditions in New York, and here are sites for Connecticut; Vermont, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts.

New Hampshire also has a hotline with extensive foliage reports, 1-800-258-3608.

And in Maine, Gale Ross, herself, accepts calls and emails and will get back to you. You can contact here at or 207-287-2793.

Inquirer Weather Columnist
We encourage respectful comments but reserve the right to delete anything that doesn't contribute to an engaging dialogue.
Help us moderate this thread by flagging comments that violate our guidelines.

Comment policy: comments are intended to be civil, friendly conversations. Please treat other participants with respect and in a way that you would want to be treated. You are responsible for what you say. And please, stay on topic. If you see an objectionable post, please report it to us using the "Report Abuse" option.

Please note that comments are monitored by staff. We reserve the right at all times to remove any information or materials that are unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, pornographic, profane, indecent or otherwise objectionable. Personal attacks, especially on other participants, are not permitted. We reserve the right to permanently block any user who violates these terms and conditions.

Additionally comments that are long, have multiple paragraph breaks, include code, or include hyperlinks may not be posted.

Read 0 comments
comments powered by Disqus
About this blog

Everyone talks about the weather, and here we write about it.

When we’re around and conditions warrant, we’ll keep you updated about what’s coming, but we will do our best always to discuss weather and climate developments in context and remind you that nothing in the atmosphere happens in a vacuum.

Tony Wood has been writing about the atmosphere for The Inquirer for 26 years.

Reach Tony at

Tony Wood Inquirer Weather Columnist
Also on
letter icon Newsletter