This is the Blue Ridge Parkway wildflower report for July 13th, 2007. If you’re coming to the highlands for a relief from the heat of the piedmont, here is some of what you may expect in mid July. Don’t think that wildflower observations end in the spring because to many folks the summer blooms are just as delightful. The high plateau that begins south of Roanoke, Virginia and runs into North Carolina around Doughton Park is in full display as the agricultural scene there comes alive with Queen Anne’s Lace and Yarrow, and Milkweed and Butterfly Weed. If yellow is your color of choice then you will enjoy the bays and the fields that are filled with Ox-Eye Daisies and Coreopsis and Black-Eyed Susans in peak bloom in many areas, especially around Rocky Knob. The large Rosebay Rhododendron with white blossoms is past its peak but still in showy bloom throughout Rocky Knob, the Mabry Mill area, and all the way south to the Blue Ridge Music Center. Many of the same species may be observed in Daughton Park in North Carolina along with some Phlox and Day Lilies, perhaps a remaining Fire Pink or two. For those spending the weekend at Crabtree Meadows campground, look for Butterfly Weed and Black-Eyed Susans and flowering Spurge in the fields behind the amphitheatre. The high elevations in North Carolina, south of Asheville, Rosebay Rhododendron is in peak bloom near Mount Pisgah and Waterrock Knob along with white Azalea and some remaining Mountain Laurel. Also look for Fire Pink and some Turkscap Lily. Weekly updates at 828-298-0398 will keep you informed of what’s being reported throughout the Parkway. Have a safe parkway visit! Enjoy the view, but watch the road.
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