PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – The most colorful time of the season is just about here!
Not only will the weather be warm and dry for outdoor walks, but the fall colors are starting to pop around the state. The Portland metro area is starting to see more patchy to spotty changes to the local and urban trees. You will notice those colors changing on the top of the trees downtown and around the quaint neighborhoods.
Are we peaking? We aren’t quite to that mark of the season. In the course of the next week or two, we will definitely get to that point. A few more crisp mornings and as we lose the daylight, the process of breaking down starts to intensify.
The urban trees around Portland come in many varieties, so you can expect a fall palette of gold, yellow, orange, red and purple! Aspen trees generally turn golden yellow with many of the maples transitioning over to red.
How about outside of Portland? Depending on your elevation and your location, you are likely pushing the 30% range for fall color progress. Many spots over the next week or two will increase to nearly 50% and above. Portland tends to see the peak foliage around mid-October! That goes for areas around Salem too. Due to the elevation of Sandy, there may be a few more trees that are moving along. Cooler nights will contribute to that.
What does this mean? That now is the time to schedule your fall hikes and to take advantage of this awesome weather. Before the rain and the wind comes in, we have many trees that are still full of leaves. With a tame forecast for the next 7 days, we can expect a thick head of leaves until they decide to fall off naturally, or the forecast ramps up.
Some tress may be transitioning quicker because of drought conditions. Around the Willamette Valley we had steered clear of drought conditions after a very wet fall. That being said, there may be a few trees that are turning brown or even dropping leaves due to the drought effect. That would likely be areas in central Oregon and extended out into the drought driven spots of the southern Willamette Valley.