Less Color This Year

When to plan your leaf viewing

Upper Peninsula – October 7-10
Northern Lower Michigan – October 13-19
Central Lower Michigan – October 16-22
Southern Lower Michigan – October 24-29

This year seems like it is going to be a week behind unless something changes rapidly. There isn’t much color showing for two reasons. We haven’t had many cool nights, and there has been ample rainfall.

This past weekend had the first few nights of temperatures in the 30s in northern Lower Michigan, and 40s in southern Michigan. Now warmer weather has moved back in and looks to stay for another 10 days. So there won’t be any cool nights until late September at earliest.

The ample rainfall plays a part in the delay also. Trees are lush in Michigan now without any drought stress. This affects fall color in two ways. First it can delay fall color some, as leaves stay greener longer. But eventually it can help our fall color. The lush leaves eventually turn color. Since they aren’t drought-stressed and dry, the trees tend to hold onto the leaves longer. Barring any strong windstorm, this could make for an extended time of peak color in Michigan.

When to plan your leaf viewing
This year I’d plan a trip to your favorite Michigan fall color spot about a week later than normal. So look at the map above and add seven days. This should put you into at least some color, and possibly peak color. So here is a range of dates for various locations.

Upper Peninsula – October 7-10
Northern Lower Michigan – October 13-19
Central Lower Michigan – October 16-22
Southern Lower Michigan – October 24-29

Source: MLive

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