Around the Peaks of Otter in Virginia, visitors will probably find lots of Jewel Weed and Butterfly Weed, St. John’s Wort, Common Milkweed, Yarrow, Black Cohosh, and Woodland Sunflower, all of which are common summer varieties here in the Blue Ridge.
Through the plateau district, which extends from Roanoke to the North Carolina state line, summer blooms are prolific with Black-eyed Susan, Queen Anne’s Lace, Coreopsis and the bright orange Butterfly Weed common throughout.
In North Carolina, in the Grandfather Mountain area, look for Yarrow, Queen Anne’s Lace, and lots of Rosebay Rhododendron blooming along the Parkway. Spiderwort, Phlox, and Morning Glory are common in the Moses Cone area, along with Turk’s-cap Lily and St. John’s Wort. Coreopsis is also in bloom in many areas throughout.
In the high elevation north of Asheville, Rosebay Rhododendron is in bloom along with new displays of Bee Balm popping out along the higher elevations from milepost 360 to 370. Wild Bergamot is starting to show also.
St. John’s Wort is thick from milepost 355 to 360 and there are nice displays of Butterfly Weed right around milepost 380 and again close to the Parkway visitor’s center in Asheville. Wild Hydrangea is on display in the Asheville area. Black-eyed Susan, Ox-eye Daisy seems to be more prominent each day.
The Parkway is a beautiful place to spend your holiday weekend, or anytime in the summer, but it’s not like most other roads. Please take some special precautions while driving. Above all, slow down, take your time, and use the overlooks to let other traffic that backs up behind you get by. As we often tell visitors, enjoy the view, but watch the road.
Regular updates for color reports will be posted to our web site home page. You can also use the National Park Service information line at 828-298-0398 to keep informed of what’s being reported on the Parkway.
Have a safe Parkway visit! Enjoy the view, but watch the road.