Wet weekend could threaten peak fall colors

Enjoy the peaking fall color while it lasts!

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources’ latest fall color update shows that all state parks, with the exception of Grand Lake St. Marys and Caesar Creek, are reaching “near peak” fall color. The other two have peaked.

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This is great news for fall color enthusiasts because it means another week where color will continue to develop, said Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Kirstie Zontini.

Make sure to take advantage of the end of this week because a storm system this weekend will bring deep moisture into the Miami Valley which means a soaking rain. The soil will be happy as the rain will help to relieve or end our drought conditions, but the leaves may suffer.

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A few factors can bring the colorful leaves down, especially over the weekend:

  • Chilly mornings: Speeds up the development of the abscission layer (this allows the tree to cut the leaf off and shut down nutrient production)
  • Windy conditions: Blows the leaves down that have produced that layer
  • Rain: Leaves can get heavy which can allow them to drop

State parks — which have a more protective canopy of trees — will likely hold their leaves longer than isolated trees in neighborhoods, so all won't be lost after this weekend's wet weather.

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