This time of year, visitors to the Blue Ridge Parkway can expect to see many of the common summer varieties of our beautiful blooming flowers. This year, thanks to some wet weather and warm conditions, there is an abundance of species blooming along the trails and on the roadsides to make for a very colorful Parkway experience.
In Virginia at the north end of the Parkway, Flowering Spurge, Evening Primrose, Small-Headed Sunflower, Joe-Pye Weed, Columbine, Wild Bergamot, Black Cohosh, Jewelweed, Bladder Campion, Yarrow, Smooth Sumac, Poke Milkweed, Common St. John’s Wort, Common Fleabane, Wild Basil, Thimbleweed, and Grey Beardtongue are all blooming.
In North Carolina near Moses Cone, there are reports of blooming Black-Eyed Susan, Yarrow, Red Clover, Beebalm, Common Milkweed, Turk’s Cap Lily, Spotted Jewelweed, Tall Bellflower, Phlox, Daisy Fleabane, Coreopsis, and Ox-eye Daisy.
Further south, between Linville Falls and the Minerals Museum, there are blooming Wild Blue Phlox, Yarrow, Beebalm, Morning Glory, Milkweed, and Common Mullein.
Between Craggy Gardens and Asheville, Jewelweed, Ox-eye Daisy, Cow Parsnip, Black-eyed Susan, Yarrow, Beebalm, Turk’s Cap Lily, Evening Primrose, Mullein, Morning Glory, Cutleaf Coneflower, Witch Hobble, Sassafras, Alum Root, Joe-pye Weed, Low Bindweed, Phlox, Silver Angelica, Indian Pipe, Wild Hydrangea, and the Sourwood Tree are all in bloom.
Heading south on the Parkway from Asheville, we have blooms of Sourwood, Turk’s Cap Lily, Coreopsis, Beebalm, Evening Primrose, Phlox, Thimbleberry, and Elderberry.
The Parkway is a beautiful place to spend your summer, but it is not like most other roads, so take some special precautions while driving. Above all, slow down and take your time. Use the overlooks to let traffic that backs up behind you go by. Enjoy the view, but watch the road.