When Laura Bly from USA Today called about the fall foliage round up article mentioned in our last post, she asked about 2009 specific predictions for the upcoming season. We wrote about general trends at the beginning of September, but now we bring you a prediction crafted specific to this year’s conditions.
Between the expertise of Norm Michaels, a silviculturist with the Willamette National Forest, and some data mining on the National Weather Service website, this is what we found.
Although a dry summer may make leaves shut down sooner than normal, it’s not really the best determinant. Based on precipitation data from the National Weather Service, we were a little under in the Willamette Valley this summer (Eugene, McMinnville, Portland), but some recent rainfall in September may put us back on track for an average mid-October peak.
It takes freezing weather for the color to really snap, so regardless of rain, we’ll have to wait for the weather to drop.
What is exciting this fall is that the National Weather Service is predicting below normal precipitation throughout much of Oregon. This should extend the fall foliage viewing season! Rain can actually wash out the leaves’ color and make them drop sooner.
We’re crossing our fingers for a cool, crisp fall and long-lasting foliage, so get out there and explore Oregon! Join our new Oregon Fall Foliage Flickr group, and share photos of your colorful adventures this season.