This is the Blue Ridge Parkway Wildflower Report for mid-September. As the weather turns cooler, and our thoughts turn to fall, there are still blooming wildflowers along the Parkway to grab your attention in addition to the fall color we are starting to see on some of the trees.
Generally, the meadows this time of year are showy with Black-Eyed Susans, Joe-Pye Weed, Queen Anne’s Lace, Ironweed, Goldenrod, and Butterfly Weed. In Virginia we have reports of Touch-Me-Nots, Flowering Spurge, Woodland Sunflower, Virgin’s Bower, and 2 or 3 different types of Goldenrod.
The Peaks of Otter area reports a long list of wildflower including Common Evening Primrose, Cut-Leaved Coneflower, White Goldenrod, Leaf-Cup, Pink Turtlehead, Arrow-Leaved Aster, Blue Lobelia, Boneset, Bull Thistle, Crownbeard, Goldenrod, Heart-Leaved Aster, Jewelweed, Joe-Pye Weed, Rough-Leaved Sunflower, White Snakeroot, Wingstem, and Woodland Sunflower.
In North Carolina, near the Mt. Mitchell and Craggy Gardens area, there is Whitesnake Root, Joe-Pye Weed, Goldenrod, Cut-Leaved Coneflowers, Jewelweed, and a variety of Asters.
Further south in the higher elevations of Mt. Pisgah and Waterrock Knob, Pink Turtleheads, White Snakeroot, White Wood Aster, Heal-All, Bull Thistle, Purple Stiff Gentian, Goldenrod, Jewelweed, Coneflowers, Purple Hairbells, Black-Eyed Susans, Filmy Angelica, and Ragwort are all being observed.
In addition to the wildflowers, some trees and vines are showing signs of change in some areas of the Parkway. Dogwood, Sourwood, Striped Maple, Tulip Poplar, Mountain Ash, Poison Ivy, and Virginia Creeper are starting to show fall color.
In a few weeks more indications of fall color will be showing up with the peak commonly occuring in early to mid-October. As always we remind you to drive carefully while on the Parkway. Keep your eyes on the road as you enjoy the view!
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.